“I am so tired!” laughed Rachel Zoe . Well, why wouldn’t she be? Fashion designer, A-list celebrity stylist, reality TV star, author, wife, and mother of two boys are just some of the hats Zoe wears, along with her signature floppy topper. The queen of boho chic visited Boston to support a fundraiser for Neurofibromatosis Type II research at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center. Hosted by Susan Roussilhes and her daughter, Hope, the owners of Newbury Street boutique Max&Riley, Zoe presented a fashion show of her eponymous spring/summer collection and mingled with her many fans at The Taj Boston.
Fashion designer Rachel Zoe at Max&Riley.
Boston Common: Welcome to Boston!
Rachel Zoe: Thank you! I actually spent two summers here. I used to go to the Cape as a kid but I spent a summer at Tufts University and a summer at Wellesley College. I love Boston; it’s such a great city.
Do you have any favorite places in Boston?
RZ: I always loved Newbury Street. It’s so beautiful. And Commonwealth Avenue. I also love Morton’s Steak House.
You are such a breath of fresh air – such a west coast vibe.
RZ: Well, it’s funny because I’m from New York. I grew up on the East Coast so it’s like, whenever I come here everyone asks, is it weird? And I’m like, no! It feels very much like home. Whenever I’m in Boston, I want to be by a fireplace in a sweater.
What’s new for spring in the Rachel Zoe Collection?
RZ: Spring is my favorite. The dresses are definitely highlights. You can wear ankle boots with them or throw on a fur or leather jacket. You can really wear them throughout the year. I would say that the gold suit is my favorite thing ever. I wore it last night to a big event. I love it, because you’re taking a suit to a whole new place.
How do you think your collection works well with the Boston woman?
RZ: You know, I always see Boston with a polished, traditional angle. Spring/Summer are a bit more relaxed, but I also feel like there are pieces like a great white trouser, or a classic shirt with a blazer or a vest that are great. You can layer them, and wear casual or dressy. I always include pieces that are traditional or classic -- more like work focused that go day-to-night. Honestly, all the women in my life live that way and need fully functional, stylish clothes. I’m constantly thinking about clothes that are practical to work into our lives, because we’re all doing different things.
You are quite the icon of a modern woman.
RZ: I’m tired!
Tired, I know. That’s part of it.
RZ: I am a tired modern woman. [She is laughing]. But all modern women are tired because we are doing so many different things.
At least we look good, thanks to you!
RZ: I try. We have to try, right?
What’s the next Rachel Zoe project?
RZ: So about two years ago I launched something called the Box of Style, which is this incredible subscription box. You know, there are all those subscription boxes. But ours is really special because—it’s a little more expensive. It’s about $350 for the year. But in the box, I curate what I think women should have every season. And it’s been tremendously successful for us. We love it. Right now, I’m working on my fall box – there will be some amazing items. I’m working on another television project as well as our next collection.