I was invited to put together a few looks and highlight my some of my favorite spring/summer pieces for a cocktail party celebrating the new LOFT pop up shop on Robertson Blvd (open until the end of June). LOFT's Head of Design Austyn Zung stopped by to raise a glass of Champagne. She had already selected her picks and we joked about how many we had in common. We discussed other concerns, too, like how to strike a flattering pose and whether to show teeth or not when being photographed (we both hate having our picture taken). She was super down-to-earth, as were the other members of her creative team who flew out from NY. Check out few of my favorite pieces (none over $100) in the slideshow above. And below, Zung talks about the inspiration behind the collection, age-appropriate dressing, and what she's coveting at the moment:
How would you describe your personal style?
It's hard for me to describe my own style but somebody whom I respect once coined it as "disheveled elegance". So I'll go with that.
What was the specific inspiration for this spring/summer collection?
We traveled to Marrakech, Fez, Provence and St Tropez. Summer became the perfect mash up of exotic influences of North Africa mixed with the eclectic beachy influences of the South of France. We named one of our collections "Global Prepster" based on a fictitious character that we made up. She was this young girl who had lived a sheltered existence growing up in Southern California but she was motivated to travel the world through her sense of adventure and her love of surfing. Along the way she picked clothing and accessories at different surf spots around the globe and combined them with pieces she already owned creating this perfect juxtaposition of preppy and exotic.
What are your 5 favorite pieces from the collection?
Well it's hard to limit it to 5.
1.) I must get the mini-tile print fluid pant.
2.) There are several shorts in the collection I want but my favorite is a multi colored awning stripe which I will wear with our white linen blazer.
3.) There is a great natural white boyfriend jean that I will wear all summer
4.) Leather sandals
5.) In our Beach collection their is a romper with a tiny anchor print on it that will be great on my summer vacation.
What items are you coveting now?
I'm coveting simple basics that I will wear constantly. Right now at the top of my list is gently worn black leather Hermes Kelly bag that I will attach a canvas shoulder strap to and wear cross-body like a small messenger bag. I am also dreaming of a pair of slip on VANS in the perfect make-upy blush tone. I don't think they exist so I will have to dye a pair to achieve the perfect color.
Loft seems to cover a wide demo from late 20s to early 40s. How do you design to cover that range each season?
More than ever age is a mindset not a number. I worked for Oscar de la Renta for several years and he always used to say, "Between 18 and 80, age doesn't matter." He's right.