Style/ Beauty

Sofia & Nicole Richie on their first-ever fashion collab, staying sane during COVID and their evolving personal styles

“I’ve never been excited about jeans in the way that I am now,” Nicole Richie exclaims from her LA studio, mid-way through our virtual (obviously) interview. The boho babe with impeccable style – whose comedic one-liners shot her into the spotlight alongside Paris Hilton in The Simple Life – is sat beside her 22-year-old sister, Sofia. They’re not only celebrating the *hopeful* end of lockdown, but the launch of their first ever joint clothing collection: Sofia Richie X House of Harlow 1960.

“I like wearing jeans. It’s fun, and it’s to me like a nice re-entry. It’s a nice, calm re-entry.” And that’s exactly the mood we’re trying to channel this season, isn’t it? A nice, calm re-entry into the real world.

It’s for that reason they’ve absolutely nailed House of Harlow 1960’s latest and most exciting drop to date: a 57-piece line which is the perfect middle ground between the loungewear we’ve been living in and those pre-lockdown outfits that are – in Nicole’s words – just that bit “too horny” for right now. Inspired by the slow and free-spirited Californian way of life we’ve *all* been trying to channel of late, the silhouettes are relaxed, the colour palette is tonal and it’s so damn comfy.

Here, the Richie sisters chat about their new House of Harlow 1960 line and how the Coronavirus pandemic was the force they needed to finally push them to design together.

Firstly, how has lockdown been for you? What have you been up to, to keep yourselves sane?

“It has been all the things,” Nicole reflects. “I mean, it was… it has been over a year… so it has been scary. I’ve found moments of silver linings that I’ve been spending a lot of time with family.

“I think that an idea that did come from lockdown is being able to create together. I think that really just came from us spending family time together and talking about things we wanted to do, and then deciding we wanted to do this collab. It was like ‘you do this’ and ‘you do this’ and – ‘let’s try this together’. I think for me, being able to create in a time of stillness has been one of the good things that has come out of this for me.”

“I would agree, it has been a rollercoaster of emotions,” Sofia added. “I think spending time with family has been keeping me completely occupied and being able to come together and do this was a great outcome of all of this.”

This is the first collection you’ve worked on together, so how have you found it? What were the different aspects of your own tastes and styles that you bought to the collection?

“I don’t necessarily think we have too similar of personal styles, which is why I was so excited to do it,” Nicole said. “I think Sofia has a great sense of fashion and personal style and street style, that’s so cool. And I was excited to kind of bring that layer onto House of Harlow, to really bring into it a new audience – and that part was super exciting.

“I think like, even when Sofia puts an outfit together, sometimes I’ll look at her and I’m like: ‘I would never even think to do that, that’s so smart’. Or I’m like: ‘I would never think to buy that as a singular item and you’ve just put it onto an outfit and maybe I wanna buy that too’. So I think for me, it just gave me a new set of eyes and something new to be open to… and that’s my favourite part about design just in general.”

“You know, people think that we have really different styles – which we do – and it actually made the designing process easier, I think,” Sofia added. “We could touch on things that the other couldn’t and it was a beautiful partnership.

“I feel like I’m very in touch with the current and the now, and the amazing thing with Nicole is she’s so timeless with her fashion and over such a long period of time she has just been so consistently effortless and chic, and I think when you bring that into something super current, that is magical.”

I noticed there are lots of looser silhouettes: wide leg trousers and floaty cami dresses. Do you think they were inspired by our new-found prioritisation for comfort? Over lockdown, we’ve all been living in tracksuits…

“We started designing this collection back in – it was right at the beginning of Covid-19, kinda – so we didn’t necessarily know what the world was going to be like and that was probably one of the biggest challenges.

“You want to pay attention to what’s going on in the world, but also know that you can’t predict anything – so yes, I do think that it played a role somewhat. But we had to be careful just as far as designing specifically for people staying home.”

Sofia added: “Yeah, we had no idea where or when the world was going to go back to normal so it wasn’t specifically for COVID times.”

Let’s touch on the fact that you designed this entire collection over Zoom. That’s *tough*. What were the challenges this caused you to face?

“I mean, I’m used to this whole process being in person and being able to touch fabrics every day and do multiple fittings with models, and Sofia didn’t get to experience that part sadly,” Nicole said.

“Yeah, it was really bizarre for me,” Sofia added. “She {Nicole} kept telling me over and over ‘this is not how it usually is’ – because this was my first time doing the whole designing process and it was tricky. It was over Zoom and we had to have everything shipped, so I don’t know any different. But we got it done.”

I also noticed that there’s lots of pastel tones across the collection which I guess is quite different to previous House of Harlow drops. They’ve been splashed with pattern and print. Was that something you had in mind, that you wanted it to be tonal and muted?

“Yeah, I mean House of Harlow is definitely a print heavy line overall,” Nicole said. “But yes, for sure, I think that doing it in more muted tones and doing it very neutral heavy for spring is something new.”

And I’ve got to ask… are there any brands you’re excited about right now for that transition back into normality?

“I’ve been doing a lot of Elder Statesman sweaters and LoveShackFancy cute little sweaters. Those have been my two,” Sofia says.

Sofia, it has been your first time designing a clothing collection. Is it a process you’ve enjoyed? What have you learned?

“Absolutely. I had such a great time,” Sofia smiled. “She {Nicole} made it easy because we’re sisters and it moved really slowly and I learned a lot from the process and I love it. I look forward to more.

“I learned a lot of patience and I didn’t really understand every step of the process – from sketching the editing – and I was just like, I don’t understand what it’s going to look like until I have it. And it was just this long process and then we got it and there was tweaks and edits to it and it was all just a game of patience, so I learned that.”

Do you see yourselves working together again in the future?

“Yeah I think we have a good work flow,” Nicole said with certainty. “It was really fun.”

If this drop is anything to go by, we’ll be setting our alarms for the next one. Keep scrolling to shop our top picks from the new Sofia Richie X House of Harlow collection, available now on

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