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Rachel Roy Talks Fashion, The Forties and Fisherman's Wharf

Fresh off the heels of NY Fashion Week, Macy's Passport and back-to-school shopping for her 9-yr-old daughter, Rachel Roy took the time to let us pick her brain (which she believes is the sexiest part of a woman)  to discuss her new diffusion line for Macy's, things no woman should be without (a trench coat accessorized with a smile) and her Bay Area roots:

What inspired your RACHEL Rachel Roy collection?

The RRR girl is the RR woman's younger self. She’s taking risks and experimenting with mixing prints and different silhouettes. I was inspired by how girls in London and Asia mix & match to show their unique point of view. Younger girls always seem to want to fit in and wear designer labels, when instead they should be dressing to express their individuality.

Do you have a favorite look from the collection?

I really love the painterly trench. It’s not your quintessential trench, as it can be worn as a coat, dress or even to a job interview. It's better to show a lot of brains, not a lot of flesh.

Do you feel that it's important for designers to create diffusion lines during the recession to make their clothing more accessible?

It really depends on the individual. It was like a second skin for me, because I used to be this girl who wanted nice things but couldn’t afford the designer pieces. When opportunities like this line up organically the collections can be a great success, but you have to make sure to stick to your passion.

How would you define the Rachel Roy woman?

I design for who I aspire to be. As you get older and know what works for your body, you want to invest in smart, in-the-know pieces that can be versatile, so that's what I like to provide.

Do you have a dream client?

For Rachel Roy, definitely Michelle Obama. It doesn’t get any dreamier than that! For RRR, I’d say Leighton Meester because she has so much confidence and courage for a young girl. When I saw her at the Met Gala, I just wanted to go up and thank her for wearing that Louis Vuitton ensemble.

Favorite fashion eras:

The actresses of the 1940's have been a huge inspiration since childhood because of their strength, beauty and glamour. Also, the laidback, gorgeous look of the 1970s served as my inspiration for my Spring/Summer '10 collection.

3 pieces should every SF woman invest in:

1. Relaxed boyfriend blazer: Pair with cropped pants and high heels. The only place it should fit well is the shoulders to show it’s meant for you.
2. Trench: It's a classic topper that also looks modern worn as a dress.
3. Cardigan: This is the perfect layering piece to always carry with you, especially when wearing a dress.

What do you have to visit when you’re in SF?

I know it’s so touristy, but I love going to the Wharf. The smell and the sound of seals and sea otters remind me of where I grew up by the beach in Monterey.

Find the Rachel Roy collection at Bloomingdales and Philanthropist. RACHEL Rachel Roy is available locally at Macy's in Union Square and Stonestown.