Fashion Week: Q&A with Derek Lam

As a frequently featured designer in The Zoe Report—and in my closet—Derek Lam was an obvious candidate for my Fashion Week Q&As! The San Francisco-born clothing creator is always one to watch, turning out crisp-clean collections season after season. In between prepping for his F/W 2011 show—which tore it up on the runways over the weekend!—and eBay Collection debut, he graciously extended a few moments to me to answer some questions for my readers, including what item in his closet he can’t live without and what every girl needs this spring. Ba-na-nas! Intrigued? Keep reading! xoRZ

RZ: First of all—let’s discuss your Spring ’11 collection, which is a stunning series of West Coast-minded looks…what is the influence behind it?
DL: Spring 2011 was a relaxed approach to rustic luxury. I was inspired by Peter Schjeldahl’s “Way Out West” piece from the January 25, 2010 issue of The New Yorker regarding California minimalism.

RZ: I die for your handbags—they are one thing I look forward to the most each season. What can we expect from you next on the accessories front?
DL: The collection will continue with the signature rams head hardware, a nod to my sign – Aries. For Spring 2011, I love exotics, bleached python and sea snake.

RZ: You obviously have a serious eye for womenswear, but speaking for the boys—what is one thing in your own closet you can’t life without?
DL: Tod’s loafers, you can wear them everywhere.

RZ: As a global fashion influence, what advice do you have for my Zoe Report readers who are planning for a career in the fashion industry?
DL: Internships are a good way to get a feel for the industry and gain experience. Hard work pays off, a great reference can be invaluable.

RZ: This spring, every girl needs an _________________.
DL: Ume bag! (pictured below)

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