“The pencil skirt with a slit has always been a very sexy piece for me,” Joseph Altuzarra told us just as his buzzy collection is poised to hit Target.
Lucky for us, the Parisian-born designer didn’t shy away from including any of his signature sizzle to the line he created for the family-friendly retailer. To wit: He even dabbled in lingerie for the first time.
The 50-piece collection, hitting stores Sept. 14, seamlessly mixes vamp with office attire. Pencil skirts and dresses with eyebrow-raising slits are paired with banker shirts or demure pussy-bow blouses. Harness belts add authority to bohemian flounce, and python prints and moody black set the tone: This woman means business.Altuzarra’s been designing clothes for self-assured, seductive women since launching his brand in 2008.It’s why fashion power girls such as Carine Roitfeld and Vanessa Traina quickly flocked to his side.
Now the CFDA Womenswear Designer of the Year, who cut his teeth at Marc Jacobs and Givenchy, is bringing this sexy sway to the masses. Someone has to balance out all the normcore right?
Congratulations on your Target line! The collection amazingly evokes both a high-level executive and a woman going on a hot date. How is that?
Thank you. When designing this collection, we kept in mind the Altuzarra woman: a woman who is confident, empowered and sophisticated. She wants to feel sexy and seductive, no matter the occasion. She has a high appreciation for quality tailoring and considered design, and wants to wear this clothing whether she’s at work or going out at night.
You always describe your clothes as being for a woman not a girl. What do you like or dislike about the way girls dress these days.
For me what is the most interesting is the mentality and mindset of somebody — so it’s not necessarily about age specifically, but more about frame of mind when it comes to dressing. Women tend to have a different sense of maturity and confidence, which is what I look for and keep in mind with my designs.
What item haveyou gotten the best feedback on?
The trench coat with peplum back has fit every woman who tries it on perfectly.
What are your thoughts on normcore?
We went through an era of runway clothing that might have been disconnected to women’s everyday life, and it is refreshing that the runway and reality seem to now be dovetailing in this new trend.
Your clothes ooze sophistication, but what does an Altuzarra woman wear on, say, a relaxed Sunday? Or weekend getaway?
No matter what the Altuzarra woman is doing, she wears something that allows her to look sexy and feel beautiful. For example, a white T-shirt with the red velvet blazer from the Target collection paired with a great skinny jean — it is a casual, comfortable yet sophisticated look. Or if she is on vacation and wants something easy for a night out or dinner with a significant other, the sequined maxi dress is sexy, effortless and beautiful.
What’s the most fun thing you’ve done this summer?
Planning for my wedding.
Nate Berkus lamps, art supplies — what do you shop at Target for?
I shop for a little bit of everything. Most recently I got two chairs!
Three essentials women should have in their wardrobe this fall:
• A trench coat. It is a really effortless piece that pulls every outfit together immediately.
• A pencil skirt with slit. It’s a great piece for work worn with a button up shirt, but also easy to dress up or down for a more glamorous look.
• A tuxedo. You can wear the pieces together or as separates, either way, it is a fashion statement every woman should try incorporating into their wardrobes.