“I went to University de la Renta,” jokes Adam Lippes the American designer who’s journey to becoming a world-famous fashion star was not one that followed the traditional creative path.
If it wasn’t for a stint in Paris, Adam Lippes would’ve been an investment banker, and no doubt a sartorially savvy one at that. But luckily for us, he discovered the “world of fashion,” fell in love and took a fashion store job – “I wanted to learn about fashion any way that I could.”
Learning fast, he soon became Creative Director for Oscar De La Renta, and eventually launched his own label in 2004.
This month Adam Lippes is a part of theoutnet.com’s Summer Shop campaign, in which us launched a 12-piece collection, which the designer calls ” modern, refined and sensual. These pieces represent the simplicity and sensuality of our brand – it was a great opportunity to revisit some of my favorites.” To celebrate the launch, Lippes talks exclusively to Emirates Woman…
(Scroll Down to See The Collection)
Looking back, I think I always wanted to be a fashion designer, but I grew up in a small town in New York state and it just wasn’t something that seemed possible. I was going to be a doctor or a lawyer or a banker, so I went to Cornell. I studied psychology and decided I was going to be an investment banker.
Before [embarking on a career as a banker] I spent a year in Paris, where I was immersed in fashion and realised, ‘this is something I can do.’ I had already got an internship lined up at an investment bank though, so I came back to New York, started my placement and realised it was not for me.
My first fashion job was at Ralph Lauren store on Madison Avenue. A year later the store manager left and went to Oscar de la Renta, taking me with her. I spent 10 years there and became the Creative Director at 26. I learned about fashion from arguably one of the greatest designers to have ever lived. I like to say that I went to University de la Renta.
Oscar allowed me to be exposed. I grew up there and learned everything from marketing and public relations to design and understanding construction, it became an all-encompassing role.
Oscar made women look beautiful and the whole thing was extraordinary – but I wanted to create a collection that was closer to the sort of things my friends were wearing: simpler in shape and fabrication without any compromise on fit and quality.
I went on Oprah [with my label], and it got a lot of attention. A big investor group came in and said:, ‘You’re going to do contemporary fashion.’ We grew to around 400 stores all over the world, creating a label.”
I have an overall idea of the woman. I have one muse who is a friend of mine. I prefer to keep her private, but she’s almost 40, she’s got incredible style and she’s a business owner.
The 12 pieces in the exclusive theoutnet.com collection are some of my favourite pieces. They represent the simplicity and sensuality of our collection.
I would love to dress the Duchess of Cambridge. I think she has incredible style and truly exemplifies our type of woman.
I do all of our social media myself and I am no good at it – I just post what I like! I don’t know where it’s going to end up – do you want authenticity or do you want this veiled promotional thing? It’s really tricky. For me personally, I find it very distracting. I would love to be on social media, follow my 50 friends and leave it at that. But in our business it has taken on a life form of its own. Our brand is growing very fast, so I don’t know how long they’re going to let me continue to do it!”
Shop Adam Lippes’ 12-piece collection on theoutnet.com now