By Chere Di Boscio
It’s about to start–the biggest week for fashion in the Middle East kicks off with Middle East Fashion Week, only to be followed by Fashion Forward. It’s a big deal that attracts big players–like Charlotte Ronson.
The daughter of writer, jewellery designer and socialite Ann Dexter-Jones and real estate mogul Laurence Ronson, Charlotte and her siblings are a talented bunch indeed: her twin sister Samantha Ronson, previously linked to Lindsay Lohan, is a well-known DJ, and older brother Mark Ronson, who worked with Amy Winehouse, is a music producer, singer/songwriter, DJ and PETA supporter too.
Charlotte, of course, is the designer of her eponymous label and makeup line, as well as ‘I Heart Ronson’, and is soon showing her fresh, whimsical American apparel line at Fashion Week Middle East.
We caught up with the designer to talk daisies, daydreams and Dubai.
You come from a musical creative family. Has that impacted what you do at all?
Yes, I take inspiration from everything around me my family and friends, traveling, nature, art as well as music
Why did you choose to show you line at Fashion Week Middle East?
I love to travel and experience new and interesting places and cultures. I have travelled to Dubai a few times now and have always loved exploring and finding new unique experiences in this city, when I was asked to present my collection I thought it was only natural. Not to mention this is an amazing opportunity to reach a broader audience.
What are the main influences for your current collection?
A daydream sets the tone for the Spring / Summer 2015 collection, reflecting the culture in which we live, and evokes feelings from my own life experiences. I was enamored by Kim McCarty, who creates these amazing soft and out-of-focus water colour paintings. I collaborated with Kim on a daisy floral print that exudes my signature aesthetic with Kim’s translucent watercolors. Tomboyish, over sized silhouettes and whimsical flowy, dreamlike styles are the best way to describe the versatility in this collection.
You’re from London and but studied in New York. Which elements of style in your own brand’s style did you pick up from both cities?
I took London’s quaint and dainty atmosphere, combined with my feminine touch, and New York’s downtown effortless vibe.
For such a young designer, you’ve had many highlights already in your career. Which ones stand out for you the most?
I’ve been lucky to have many different highlights- hard to pick just one. It’s been great to partner with JCPenney on my diffusion collection, I Heart Ronson. Also, I’m so grateful for the many seasons I have been able to show my collection during New York Fashion Week.
Has the natural world inspired your work in anyway?
Absolutely! Nature has inspired me. I had one collection with a heavy influence from the ocean, and my current SS15 uses imagery from clouds and daisies. I also try my best to produces in NYC so I can control my work environment as much as possible. As well as always supporting numerous charities. My friend Tyson Toussant started Bionic Yarn which is an incredible company that transforms fibers made from recycled plastic into durable textiles. We could all learn from them and follow suit! We need to find more ways to not only recycle but to do our best to reuse as well!!
What’s the most positive thing you do for the environment in your daily life?
Since I live in Manhattan I try to walk as much as possible, and I recycle both at home and in my office. My entire collection is produced in New York so I can personally make sure the factories are clean and safe. For many years I have been hugely involved with the Humane Society, I recently participated in their annual Paws for Style event.
What is your Greatest ‘Eco Sin’?
None that I know of!
What would be your choice for an eco-friendly dream travel destination?
I would love to go on a safari or visit the rain forest for some sort of initiative to protect wildlife.
What are your favorite ‘green’ skincare, food, home or fashion brands?
I am a big fan of the Honest Company. They make great products for the home that are eco-friendly. Skyn Iceland and Mario Badescu are great skin care companies and their product is not tested on animals. My friends have a company called Pressed Juicery which is amazing and eco-friendly and organic!
Which high profile person trying to make a difference do you most admire, why?
Jessica Alba, She really is trying to use her brand to create a true eco-friendly company that is also cute , affordable and easily accessible to the everyday person. I think what she is doing is fantastic and the products work great!
When and where are you the happiest?
I am happiest during family vacations. We don’t see each other enough so it’s so nice when we can all get together.
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All images via Charlotte Ronson.