Lauren Conrad launched her third LC Lauren Conrad Runway Collection with Kohlâ€™son Wednesday, with one exciting addition: For the first time, Conrad has expanded her range to include plus sizes.
Conrad teamed up with a curvy influencerÂ Loey LaneÂ to help introduce herÂ line to the public. LaneÂ is a plus-size blogger and YouTube starÂ with an audience of over 1 million people. By the looks of Laneâ€™sÂ following, itâ€™s clear that her fashion sense and positive energy havenâ€™t gone unnoticed by people online â€” includingÂ Conrad.
In an exclusive interview with Yahoo Style, Conrad talked about her love for Lane and how she decided that the influencer would beÂ the face of the â€œDowntown Glamâ€ collection. With a number of faux fur, suede, and metallic items, the capsule collection includes apparel, shoes, jewelry and accessories â€” all under $154 and available nationwide in Kohlâ€™s stores and on Kohls.com.
Yahoo Style: What influenced you to finally expand the sizing of your brand?
Lauren Conrad: Itâ€™s been a long time coming. Weâ€™ve wanted to do plus for a while, and weâ€™ve been asked for a while by our customers to expand to plus, so weâ€™re very excited to be able to do it. Especially alongside runway because itâ€™s sort of a way for us to celebrate the expansion into this category. When you have a line like this, they slowly roll out categories for you. So as soon as I was allowed to do [plus] I did. There was no reason I wasnâ€™t doing it before aside from it just being the natural growth of a line. One of the things that I really like about partnering with Kohlâ€™s is that this line is accessible as far as a price point, and I wanted to make sure that weÂ expanded into the sizes as well.
What have you learned about your audience while working with Kohlâ€™s?
LC: With each collection itâ€™s so interesting for me to see what sells, what she gravitates towards, what she wants more of. So over the years Iâ€™ve been able to just learn a lot about my customer. And itâ€™s always so interesting to me and it also helps me, not just with existing lines, but what we expand into. Weâ€™re able to say, â€œThis is whoâ€™s shopping our line. What else can we offer her that fits what she wants?â€
Have you had any personal experiences that might have aided in your push toward size inclusivity?
LC:Â Working in entertainment, people comment on your body all the time. But Iâ€™ve always worked hard to stay fit and feel good about myself, so if anyone does come and attack me, it doesnâ€™t really affect me in that way because I feel good about the way that I take care of myself. I donâ€™t know that feeling good about yourself and dressing in a way that you love should be limited. So I think that the more people that can enjoy your line, the better.
In the past, you banned the word â€œskinnyâ€ from your website. Can you tell us a little bit about that?
LC:Â I think body positivity is so important. My main focus on my site has always been health, so that was one of the reasons that we wanted to avoid the word skinny, because skinny should never be your goal. It should be healthy, and that looks different on everybody. I just wanted to make sure that we were really focusing on taking care of yourself and feeling good about yourself, as opposed to a number on a scale or size of clothing youâ€™re wearing.
Loey Lane is such an amazing influencer to get involved. How did your partnership with her take place?
LC:Â With the release of the line, we wanted to partner with someone who can celebrate us coming out, and we looked at a lot of different plus-size bloggers and just loved Loey. We love what she represents â€” sheâ€™s adorable and such a positive, wonderful person. So she was a part of the shoot we did for the line. We spent the day together, and Iâ€™m really excited for her to be a part of this.
Did you pull inspiration from any other curvy influencers?
LC:Â I definitely did the research, but I was paying more attention to the market and seeing what was out there. For me, when I get into a new category like this, I want to make sure Iâ€™m filling the void and not just offering more of whatâ€™s already available. So that was one thing that was really important to me, to make sure that we were basically just expanding the existing line and offering current trends with these pieces to plus-size customers.
Plus-size bridal is something that is in high demand. Any interest in that?
LC: Bridal is something that would be amazing to do, but itâ€™s really tricky to make affordable wedding dresses just because they tend to be more intricate and the fabrics are more luxe. It would have to be an opportunity that made sense where we could do a price point that was accessible, but you still want to make sure that the quality is there, especially if itâ€™s a bridal piece that someone wears on one of the most important days of their life.
Speaking of important milestones, you just recently had your first baby. How has it been balancing life as a mom and a designer?
LC:Â Itâ€™s a challenge. I did a lot of work before, though. Fortunately, I knew I would be taking my version of a maternity leave, so we worked really hard to get ahead on this collection so that I could step away for a minute. Then, I think we shot it maybe two and a half weeks after I had delivered, so that was my first day away when I went to the photoshoot. I was obviously behind the camera, but there was a lot of planning that went into it. I have an amazing team and Kohlâ€™s, so everything was pretty seamless.