Rachel Zoe Gives Us Her Styling Tips, Talks Jewelry Line And Overpacking

To quote our own catchphrase, and the mega-stylist herself, Rachel Zoe is everything. Back in February, her first foray into design, a collection inspired by Parisian elegance and London street style, was die-worthy, and her follow-up for spring '12 was on-trend, heavy on prints and glamour.
Now, for resort '12, RZ is bringing back the '60s and '70s in a major way — think Bianca Jagger in St. Barths (not coincidentally, it's Zoe's perfect vacay spot). Cocktail dresses, sharp blazers, flowy skirts, and flared jeans are on-point for your next jaunt just north of the equator, and, wallflowers beware, there's more color here than you'd find in a bag of Tropical Starburst. To get us in the mood for our next browse on Expedia, we got Rachel to spill the beans on the whole range, plus (and this a big plus) all the dish on her vacation staples, warm-weather styling tips, and, of course, what to pack — and just how much. Yes, we discussed those 11 bags she brought to Paris Fashion Week. Oh, and a jewelry collection? She lets us in on that, too.
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Click through to see the Rachel Zoe resort '12 collection, and exclusive pics and quotes from the designer. Bananas!
Photo: Courtesy of Starworks.
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Your resort collection is super-colorful, has ruffles, and also several sleek, tailored pieces. What's the inspiration?
“I will always be inspired by the '60s and '70s — I think you will find every season that there are elements from both these iconic decades in all my collections. The maxi dresses and skirts definitely came from vintage Halston references — very reminiscent of Bianca Jagger and Anjelica Houston in the '70s. YSL inspired safari jackets and shorts. But there are definitely some obvious elements of the '60s— everything from short mod shift dresses to color blocking skirt and suit looks."

Photo: Courtesy of Starworks.
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Hot pinks, bold purples, and super-sandy camel. How did you select the colors that you used in the collection?
“I really wanted to introduce bold colors in a fun new way — and I think this collection does just that. The different silhouettes and color palettes make the collection so versatile — you can easily wear the same piece a million different ways and pair it with countless pieces from the collection. I wanted colors that would work with any skin tone; Even though it’s a “resort” collection its not fair to assume everyone is going to have a St. Barths' glow when wearing the pieces. For me it was really important to create a color palette that worked across multiple environments and seasons. There are elements from this collection that you can carry throughout the year, and I think that’s something women will really appreciate.”

Photo: Courtesy of Starworks.
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Love all your maxi skirts and long, wide-legged pants! What's the best way to style them for the petite girls out there?
“Seriously high heels! In any form, be they platform, wedges or simple pumps — anything to give the illusion of an elongated figure. Also try a high- waisted belt with any of the skirts, or a wide belt that sits on the hips with some of the maxi dresses — something to give a little shape so you don’t get lost in all the fabric. For the maxi skirts, if you want a great casual alternative, style them with a chunky knit tank and leather jacket—like we did for our lookbook — so effortless yet chic”

Photo: Courtesy of Starworks.
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We know you're a huge fan of baubles and bling, when can we expect to see a jewelry line from the Rachel Zoe Collection?
“Next fall I hope — we are in the design process now. So exciting!”

Photo: Courtesy of Starworks.
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We hear you brought around 11 pieces of luggage to Paris Fashion Week. How much do you bring when you pack light?
“Ha yes—word travels fast. It was for both London and Paris fashion weeks — plus Skyler had a couple suitcases too! But that’s not how I usually travel at all. If I am going away for a short time I’ll pack in two carry-ons or ship two large suitcase ahead of time — I hate to check a bag.”

Photo: Courtesy of Starworks.
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What's your favorite piece in the collection (pick just one)? And why?
“I could never pick! But if I had to I seem to wear the white maxi skirt the most. Maybe because it is one of the most versatile — I wear it during the day with an LNA tank and Rick Owens leather jacket, or a great Philip Lim knit. But it’s equally as amazing for night with a tuxedo blazer, or sequin cardigan, or with the matching halter and python leather blazer from my collection — obsessed."

Photo: Courtesy of Starworks.
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What are three vacation wardrobe essentials?
“Well it depends entirely on the destination. For city I would say a killer pair of boots, a trench or faux fur jacket/vest, depending on the season, and a great pair of jeans. For beach — sunnies, a wide brimmed hat and a caftan (or two). I almost always over pack because I like to have options!”

Photo: Courtesy of Starworks.
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Tell us about your favorite vacation spot.
“St. Barths is my favorite — so cultured and chic — I can always truly relax when I am there. It has been so influential in all my collections—I find I am always inspired and in the moment when I’m there.”

Photo: Courtesy of Starworks.
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