Designer Doo-Ri Chung sat down with All the Looks Insider at the Doo.Ri for Macy’s preview to talk about her jersey-chic collaboration, the allure of trench coats and what it’s really like to dress the First Lady.
Q: What was most important to you when it came to the aesthetics of the collection?
A: As far as the designs went, I really wanted to stay true to my own design aesthetic and to offer that to the Macy’s customer. The real beauty and luxury of doing this is that I design it, but somebody else really makes it come alive and at a price point I could never achieve. That’s what’s been so exciting for me. I also got to work with their [Macy’s] fabric library, and that was the most time-consuming part, because they have millions of fabrics.
Q: Any pieces that stand out as personal favorites?
A: I have a lot. I mean, I think they did a fantastic job! And I love the trench coat and, you know, when we did fittings we would try on some of the dresses. Everything is so easy and effortless, but it makes you feel and look great. So, yes, a lot of the dresses are fantastic, but my personal favorite is the trench. I’ve always been a big fan of trench coats.
Q: One of the things your brand is really known for is jersey-style dresses. What bulk of the Doo.Ri for Macy’s collection reflects that?
A: The majority of the pieces. I mean, it’s something you can wear for evening or day, or can be worn with an outerwear piece or with boots. And even the knits kind of fall the way jersey does.
Q: You received a lot of media attention after Michelle Obama wore one of your dresses to the state dinner honoring South Korean President Lee Myung-bak and wife Kim Yoon-ok this past October. What went into that, and how did it feel seeing her in your design?
A: I definitely have to give a lot of credit to Emma, who handles our PR. She’s been wanting Mrs. Obama for a long time, as have I, and, you know, they’d been in talks for a while and it just so happened that the Korean president was coming to the state dinner and was being honored. Being that I’m a Korean designer, we felt like if there was ever going to be an opportunity, this might be it, and it ended up working out really well. We were just so excited. Plus, I’m a big fan of [Michelle Obama’s]. I think she’s such an intelligent, beautiful woman, and to be able to dress her was a dream come true.
Q: Your spring collection is characterized by a lot of neutrals with fresh twists. What was the thought process behind it?
A: I think I’ve always gone for this sort of effortless elegance, and I think a woman who doesn’t look like she’s trying is something I always gravitate toward. I’ve never really been about loud, so I love the nudes and the whites, but we did a lot of prints for that season as well and some of that violet color, which was so beautiful and was, in fact, the color Michelle Obama chose to wear. Any color that flatters a complexion is a color I always gravitate toward. I always keep in mind the woman I’m dressing, first and foremost. I mean, my job is to make [women] look beautiful.
The limited-edition, thirty-piece Doo.Ri for Macy's Impulse collection will be sold at an est. 185 Macy's stores and macys.com on Feb. 15 (pictures to come!).
Photo: Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images