Tag Archives: Q&A

Kristin Cavallari: Dillard’s Exclusive Interview

Seamlessly adding shoe designer to her credentials, TV personality Kristin Cavallari has recently offered the world some irresistible kicks. Her creations — from studded flats to slinky ankle-strap heels — infuse classic silhouettes with feminine attitude. Find out more about the Chinese Laundry by Kristin Cavallari line in our exclusive interview.

Kristin rocking the  Lotteria in melon. Love!

Kristin rocking the Lotteria in melon. Love!

Q: Who is the typical Kristin Cavallari customer?
On-the-go women who want to look effortless and chic.

Q: Where do you draw most of your inspiration for your designs?
Fashion magazines, books and the runway.

Q: Who are your major influences?
Christian Louboutin, YSL and Kate Moss.

Q: What do you feel you bring to the industry?
My line is all about simplicity. I want the shoe to complete the outfit, not outshine it.

Q: What’s the ultimate message you want to get across through your shoes?
You can look and feel great without spending a fortune.

Q: Did you attend school for design or are you self-taught?
Self taught. I’ve just been obsessed with shoes since I can remember! I’ve kept an inspiration book for over 8 years.

Q: What are some of your favorite shoes in the line?
 The Lotteria is the perfect summer sandal, and it comes in 3 beautiful color combos.

Q: What are some key trends we will see from your line next season?
Fall is all about boots and more booties. You can never have enough. The colors are richer, darker hues.

Q: Tell us about a shoe you will never forget
 The Lotteria because it’s the shoe I absolutely had to have, and it’s been one of my most popular shoes.

Q: Which shoe should no woman be without?
Every woman needs a great nude heel!

Shop all Chinese Laundry by Kristin Cavallari.

Which shoe is your favorite? Comment to let us know!

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Filed under Shoes

Fit Tips: How to Find Your Perfect Swimsuit

Have questions about swimsuit shopping? We crowd sourced our creative team for their most puzzling pool-wear quandaries. Check out the resulting swimsuit FAQ for expert tips on fit and styling.

Q: Can I add volume to my chest without resorting to push-up cups?

A: Don’t be so quick to dismiss push-up styles. Modern push-up cups are soft and subtle for a natural appearance. Plus, many styles are offset with feminine accents, so you can rest assured you won’t look like you’re swimming in your bra.

But if you’re still not sold, try two of our favorite new trends: handkerchief and fringe bikini tops. Both styles are flattering and free-spirited, creating the illusion of a larger chest while balancing the overall shape of your figure.

Shop the Suits: Coco Rave Practical Magic Underwire Top, Gianni Bini Butterfly-Print Flutter Top,  Roxy Surf Essentials Fringe Bandeau Top

Q: Do I have to stick with solids to look my slimmest? 

SwimImage2 A: Of course not! Just remember, small-scale prints minimize while large-scale prints emphasize. Mixing and matching different patterns and solids lets you spotlight your best assets. For example, pairing a boldy printed bikini or tankini top with a solid bottom is a simple, chic way to keep the focus on your upper body.

Shop the Suits: GB Bird-Print Halter Top & Stripe Hipster BottomChristina Swimwear Woman Floral-Print Tankini Top, Coco Rave So Social Bandeau Top & Solid Bottom

Q: Any tips for finding tummy-taming suits that aren’t constricting?

A: We’re loving this season’s peasant-inspired tankini tops. They’re fitted through the bust but softly skim your midsection for a slimming illusion. Blouson tops – which feature loose bodies with banded hems – keep you covered and feeling confident even when you’re in the water.

Spanx and Magicsuit swimsuits are also great options. Both lines offer comfortable control designs that couple light compression with flattering accents (like draping, shirring and tiers) for a slimmed-down look in seconds.

Shop the Suits: Athena Pick Your Fit Mandalay Bandini Top,  Kenneth Cole Reaction True Love Tankini Top, Spanx Riveting Ruching One-Piece Swimsuit 

Q: I’m young but not confident about my rear and upper thighs. How do I hide my problem areas and still look my age? 

A: Skirted bikini bottoms and swimdresses not only conceal your lower body, but also make a feminine statement. In fact, we find many skirted suits flirtier than traditional bikinis. Look for skirts with ruffled or pleated hems to achieve that coveted balance of coverage and youth.

Another way to minimize thighs and hips? Put the emphasis on your upper body. Think ruffled bandeau tops, shoulder-accentuating halter tops, or striped tops paired with solid bottoms. Basically, anything that draws the eye up.

Shop the Suits: Betsey Johnson Beauty Mark Floral-Print Swimdress, Kenneth Cole New York Haute Wave Bandeau Top & Skirted Bottom, Eco Swim Galaxy Ruffle Bandeau Top & Hipster Bottom

Q: How do I choose a suit that complements my skin tone?

A: Finding a swimsuit that complements your complexion is just like shopping for a dress or top. If you always feel good in purple, take some purple suits into the dressing room. And though black is a traditionally slimming choice, avoid it in favor of other dark shades (navy, plum, olive) if you typically look washed out in it.

To fake a tan, turn to warm shades such as coral, orange, red and neon. These hot hues not only bring a bronze glow to pale complexions, but also enhance darker skin tones. 

Shop the Suits: Miraclesuit Up & Coming One-Piece Swimsuit,  Gianni Bini Striped Ruffle Top & BottomGB Monokini One-Piece Swimsuit 

Q: I want a coverup that provides coverage but is still sexy. Any suggestions?

A: Coverups are key to pulling together a glam pool or beach look. While caftans are a classic choice, we’re smitten with this season’s crochet styles. They provide crucial coverage but also reveal playful hints of skin – the best of both worlds.

If you’re trying to pack lightly for vacation, go with a maxi dress. The multitasking silhouette pairs with flip-flops for the beach and wedge sandals for dinner.

Shop the Suits: Gianni Bini Crochet Tank Coverup, Becca Colorized Romper CoverupTrina Turk Tokyo Bay Maxi Dress Coverup

Click here to see our entire selection of women’s swimsuits.

Do you have fit or styling tips? Tell us in the comments!


Filed under Women

Dillard’s Exclusive Interview: Tableware Designer Julia Knight

Q. Where do you get your inspiration from?
A. From my time living in Paris and the global tapestry of my travels: the flash of color from a Sari, the sea off the coast of St. Tropez, the flesh from a ripe mango, an oyster’s shimmering shell, the delicateness of wild sage, a cranberry’s translucent depth.

Q. How do you decide your design style?
A. I love a design style that mixes natural textures like warm woods and dramatic animal prints, with more womanly elements like shimmer and shine. My goal is to add a bit of glamour and sparkle to the table while keeping it comfortable and functional. My collection is all about color and creating your own personal palettes of color that reflect your personality and mood.

Q. What are your tips for entertaining?
A.  It isn’t necessarily about what one serves, it isn’t about slaving for hours to create the perfect evening. That’s old school. New school is making the perfect evening perfectly effortless. My serveware and glassware can help transform even the most ordinary food and refreshment into something unique without having to break a sweat. It is what I call “entertaining redefined.”

Q. What makes the Julia Knight collection different?
A. Color is definitely a strength and the mix of materials to create something that is at the same time glamorous but comfortable. My look is female, not feminine; dramatic and comfortable — it makes you feel really good about yourself.

Q. Which is your favourite piece? What is an ideal piece to gift to a friend?
A. It changes with each season. Right now, I am favoring the new Peony 12” round deep bowl.  It is the perfect piece to serve in. And if you add a small bowl in the center, it becomes an ideal chip and dip.

Q. What colors do you like to use the most?
A. One of my favorite colors is amethyst, which can be paired with kiwi and hydrangea for a gorgeous mix or with platinum, toffee and snow for a sophisticated look. I am also fond of the Pretty in Pink color-story for spring — caviar, champagne, raspberry, snow and platinum.

Q. Of all things, why did you choose to design décor and tableware?
A.  One of my greatest joys is entertaining others.  I love the chance to make people feel special, and I want to be present at a party and not worn out from the preparation. This drove my desire to design entertaining table and serveware that would make anything I served, from shrimp and cocktail sauce to smoked salmon and caviar, absolutely stunning. I want my guests to leave with a memorable experience.

Q. Any future plans to make additions to your collections?
A. This spring I’m thrilled to introduce “Wood Jewels,” a collection I’ve been working on for more than a year that combines sumptuous hand-carved wood with our signature enamel — it’s jewelry for your table. Also new, a royal “Queen Bee” design that has folks buzzing already and a fabulous collection of fish I call “Pescador.”

Shop the Julia Knight Collection.

What’s your favorite Julia Knight piece? Tell us about it in the collection.  

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Filed under Home

The HomeFront: Dillard’s Exclusive Interview with Reba McEntire

Q.  How would you describe your own style for your home?
A.  I would describe my home as being warm and inviting. I want everyone who visits to feel welcome, comfortable and relaxed. I love to surround myself with pieces that bring back fond memories: trips, family, friends, accomplishments and personal items that reflect who I am.

Q.  What connections do you feel between being a home decor designer and an artist/singer/songwriter?
A.  They are both outlets for expressing my creativity and connecting with someone. I feel my creativity for music and my brand are similar in that I want to have a connection with my products, much like I want to have that connection with my fans when I sing.

Q.  What do you feel you bring to the home furnishing industry that’s different from other designers?
A.  With my profession, I travel all over the world which gives me the advantage of seeing what is available in the marketplace. I want to bring products to my consumer that are special and have meaning when brought into their home.  I look for products that are made of quality materials that will add warmth to my home. That is what I am creating with my brand.

Q.  Where do you draw most of your inspiration or ideas for products?
A.  I gather inspiration from everything: magazines, traveling, landscapes, architecture, friend’s homes, other people.  I always have my eyes open for great products and what is being offered in hopes that we can design something unique and not do what everyone else is doing.

Q.  How did your partnership with Dillard’s home first begin?
A.  We started the REBA Brand with ladies sportswear in the Spring of 2005.  After finding success in this category, we were approached to create a bedding line for Dillard’s. My home is my retreat. It’s the warm, comfortable place where I get to relax and spend quality time with family and friends, so Harmony for the Home was a natural extension for me and the brand. I personally use the products, and my home is full of the REBA bedding and bath collections.

Q.  Can you give us a sneak peak of some upcoming REBA home fashions?
A.  We have several beautiful bedding collections coming for fall. Gold Coast is a regal, traditional collection in gold and cream. Belvedere is made up of a large scale border with black and camel hues that will be offered with coordinating drapery and decorative pillows. The Belvedere collection is grand and makes a statement.  We will also be offering an American Indian collection that is made up in the beautiful, rich colors of burgundy, camel and turquoise. We have many more collections coming this fall that we know you will love!

Q.  What’s the ultimate message you want to get across through your products?
A.  I want people to know that my products are a direct reflection of my lifestyle. I hope that my consumer will connect with them because they reflect a level of quality and comfort that I personally approve.

Shop Reba’s Divine Harmony Christmas Tree for the home.

Shop all Reba home products. Shop all Reba.

What’s your favorite Reba product? Tells us about it in the comments. 


Filed under Home

Dillard’s Exclusive Interview with Dogeared Owner & Creative Director Marcia Maizel-Clarke

Q: What made you want to get into the jewelry business?
A: I’ve been drawn to artistic pursuits ever since I was a kid.  Jewelry making is a very hands-on medium.  When I first started designing jewelry, it was important to me to combine artistry with the idea that jewelry can be meaningful.  Jewelry is a very personal medium and I love that.  A favorite necklace can become a part of a woman’s daily ritual. Dogeared jewelry marks special occasions and touches the lives of so many great women.  That’s powerful stuff.

Q: Where do you draw inspiration from?
A: Anything goes!  There’s a big wide world to draw inspiration from!  We have a charm inscribed with the words, “I have angels” — which was spotted scrawled in chalk on a sidewalk in Paris!  (I love Paris.)

Q: Who/what are your major influences?
A: Life is my major influence! Beautiful things are everywhere — people, nature, art, life experiences, travel and seeing the world shape the Dogeared brand.

Q: What is the most exciting place your jewelry has been featured?
A: It’s definitely fun to see Dogeared featured on TV, in print, and on movie stars.  I love watching a movie with my daughter and spotting Dogeared, but honestly, I get just as much of a thrill seeing it on someone who is just walking down the street!    

Q: We love how gift-ready these pieces are. Which design is your favorite to give?
A: It really depends on the recipient, of course.  Karma is a classic on every level – it’s classically beautiful, and the message is a universal one: what goes around, comes around…our mantra!

Q: Who is the Dogeared woman?
A: Our customers are diverse, but they share some common characteristics.  A Dogeared woman is soulful and optimistic.  She gives her all in her relationships — she has an awareness of how everyone and everything on this planet is connected.  She’s got a playful, positive spirit and goes with the flow.  I’ve always said that you don’t have to live in California in order to live the California lifestyle!

Q: What sets Dogeared apart from other lines?
A: When we use phrases like “handcrafted with love” and “infused with good energy” and “made in the U.S.A.” we really and truly mean it.  These aren’t marketing slogans — they come from the heart, and they are how we do business.  We make everything by hand here in our southern California studio using eco-friendly materials and local vendors.  And our customers respond to that.  Our brand is part of a larger lifestyle that focuses on being positive in everything that you do.

Q: What are some of your favorite trends for fall?
A: Layering your look gives you a chance to play and use your imagination.   It keeps things fresh.  I think this works with your jewels, and your clothes too. Our pieces are simple, current and classic, so they go with everything. I am ready for fall — I love big sweaters and boots, and I can’t wait for the weather to change.

Q: What are your three must-have pieces from your collection?
A: The Karma Necklace is our top seller because it’s beautiful in both look and spirit.   The Always Beautiful Moroccan Earrings are featherlight, so you’ll actually WANT to wear them all day long!  They also are very visual, which is why the stylists are always using them for the big screen.  And the Good Luck Elephant Necklace because I love elephants!

Shop all Dogeared here.

Which piece from the collection is your favorite?

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Filed under Accessories

Dillard’s Exclusive Interview with Foot Petals Founder Tina Aldatz

Q: Who is the typical Foot Petals woman? 
A: Typically, she’s a professional fashionista between 25 and 40.  She’s smart, on trend and loves shoes!

Q: Where do you draw inspiration for your designs? 
A: From my own life experience and customer demand – and let’s not forget wardrobe malfunctions as well.

Q: Who are your major influences? 
A: Designer shoes are a work of art; therefore, Foot Petals are meant to complement the design of shoes, to add rather than take away. I always like to keep my designs classic, functional and minimal.

Q: What do you feel you bring to the industry? 

A: I made insoles feminine, sexy and fashionable.

Q: What’s the ultimate message you want to get across through your shoes? 

A: You don’t have to sacrifice style for comfort.  Women can look great and feel great too.  Foot Petals allow women to customize their shoes for a perfect fit with an insole that offers superior cushioning that will never go flat.

Q: Did you attend school for design or are you self-taught? 

A: I’ve always had a love for fashion and most of my career was spent in fashion retail from Victoria’s Secret to BCBG. As my interest in developing and designing the best insoles in the market grew, I became a certified pedorthist; which means I’m an expert in shoe fitting and shoe modification.

Q: What are some of your favorite products in the line?

A: I cannot live without Tip Toes and Heavenly Heelz in every shoe I wear! You shouldn’t either.

Q: What are some key trends we will see from your line next season?

A: It’s all about Foot Petals comfort 24/7.  From glamorous, evening metallics to terry cloth washable insoles, Foot Petals has developed a cushion for every shoe and lifestyle.

Q: Tell us about a shoe you will never forget.

A: I will never forget the highest pair of heels I own, which is a platform Manolo Blahnik (6 inches high) and very difficult to walk in.  But I saved myself the worry and pain by placing Tip Toes on top of Killer Kushionz for my ball-of-foot area and Heavenly Heelz at the back of the heel to ensure the perfect fit.  I don’t want to end up on TMZ… Preventative maintenance is how I like to think of it.

Q: Which shoe should no woman (or man if applicable) be without?

A: A nude peep-toe slingback is very professional and sexy.  It’s so versatile, taking you from day to night and is great for traveling too.

Shop our picks: Tip Toes, Killer Kushionz & Heavenly Heelz 

Get more fit tips here.

Tell us how you use your Foot Petals.


Filed under Shoes

Donald J Pliner: Dillard’s Exclusive Interview

Q: Who is the typical Donald J Pliner woman?
A: She’s constantly changing. Most recently she is probably 25-65. We try to have something for everybody – depending on her needs – but we focus on comfort and fashion.

Q:Where do you draw most of your inspiration for your designs?
A: Everywhere! There are colors, shapes and textures all around us, no matter if you are in your own neighborhood or in an exotic location. I choose to take in all things around me. In addition, I look at past history and my library of shoes, but always think forward.

Q: Who are your major influences?
A: I have so many, but most of all – the customer.

Q: What do you feel you bring to the industry?
A: A unique combination of fashion and comfort, along with proper price, value and quality.

Q: What’s the ultimate message you want to get across through your shoes?
A: You can be comfortable and beautiful at the same time. If your feet are comfortable, so is your mind, soul/sole, outward and inward appearances.

Q: Did you attend school for design or are you self-taught?
A: I studied Art History and Painting, which really gave me a unique perspective on the way I look at designs. But for the most part, I learned design on my own.

Q: What are some of your favorite shoes in the line?
A: The ones that sell! Seriously, I love them all, even ones that are continued repeats/renewals.

Q: What are some key trends we will see from your line next season?
A: More texture and color. Metals and hardware. Snake prints and animal prints. Heels from high to low and thin to thick. Riding boots to sexy boots. It’s going to be fantastic!

Q: Tell us about a shoe you will never forget.
A: Oh, there are so many. However, I guess my most memorable are the “stretch” shoes, my Western pieces and then the Peace Sign shoes that I have done.

Q: Which shoe should no woman be without?
A: Well there are two, either a Donald J Pliner or one from my wife’s line, Lisa for Donald J Pliner. Either of those two will do just fine!

Shop all Donald J Pliner.
Shop all Lisa for Donald J Pliner.

What trends are you most excited to see next season?


Filed under Shoes