More than a decade after the launch of a small line of caftans, Allegra Hicks has transformed her eponymous clothing line into an international luxury lifestyle brand by adding ready to wear, beachwear, home accessories and an interior collection of fabrics, rugs and wallpapers. Her unique style is praised the world over, and her design aesthetic reflects the rich bohemian theme that has become her trademark. Hicks’ line of fabrics is distributed exclusively for Lee Jofa, and she sat down with us recently to answer some questions about the evolution of her style and her business.
- How has your design aesthetic evolved over the years?
I have developed a more comprehensive creative vocabulary that allows me more interesting but at times simpler designs.
- What city inspires you the most?
Every city inspires me. The first and foremost has always been New York City, but at the moment I would say Delhi and Naples are very exciting for me creatively.
- What is the most rewarding/fulfilling aspect of your job?
What I love most is the satisfaction that comes from developing a design and then seeing the realization into, for instance, a beautiful fabric… This is the most wonderful feeling of accomplishment.
- Did you have a mentor growing up that influenced your career path? (If so, who?)
I did not have a mentor but I grew up around beautiful designs. My father draws very well, my mother has a very strong sense of aesthetic and I was taught the great value of discipline.
- How is designing a fashion line similar to designing a decorative textile line for the home?
I think designing fabric is like painting. You must like it. I have fun drawing a pattern and then giving it a place. Some fabrics are born to be on a dress, some others are just perfect in an interior. It is the sensibility of the designer to understand that.
- How much does your personal style influence your designs?
I would say my personal style is an extension of myself and my designs are an expression of my thoughts and creativity, so of course they go hand in hand.
- In your opinion, how has the interior design industry changed over the years?
The design industry has become much more accessible. People are not scared of design and do not think anymore that is difficult to live with design. Design is an essential part of our daily life, from a bottle opener to a beautifully upholstered modern sofa or a contemporary rug.
- What are some of the challenges of creating a lifestyle brand that spans multiple industries: fashion, interiors, etc.?
Not to lose focus, to keep the coherence of what the brand wants to say, of what the ethic and aesthetic is about. If it’s luxury, which kind of luxury? For us, it’s understated but firmly present.
- What do Allegra Hicks fans have to look forward to from your upcoming collections?
A beautiful palette of mauves for the spring, sophisticated textures and a very cool collection of midnight blues.
- What will we find in your new shop in London?
My new cruise fashion collection of course! You will also find cushions, printed cashmere blankets, weekender bags in my interiors fabrics, one-off beautiful pieces I have been collecting, including vintage bags that have been put together in the last month. Very soon Spring Summer fashion collection will be arriving as well.
- Can you give us a little insight into what your book will be about?
The book will be about my designs, the textiles, the interiors with the textiles, the inspirations, an insight into the creative process through the eye of the designer.
Visit your local Lee Jofa showroom to see Allegra’s latest textile collection available through Groundworks.
If in London, stop by Allegra’s shop:
42 Elizabeth Street
London SW1W 9NZ
+44 (0)20 7730 3552