This year marked the 15th anniversary of Rebecca Taylor's signature collection, which she launched back in 1996 after studying fashion design at Wellington Polytechnic and relocating from New Zealand to New York, where she spent six years working for Cynthia Rowley before establishing her own line.
Today, Taylor's label is carried in more than 500 stores in over 40 countries, and in her recently opened flagships in California and NYC's Meatpacking District. Her designs have appeared in Gossip Girl and Sex and the City and are worn by celebs such as Jessica Alba, Rashida Jones, Selena Gomez, Kristen Bell, Reese Witherspoon, Sarah Jessica Parker, Vanessa Hudgens, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Katherine Heigl, Nicole Richie, Cameron Diaz, Liv Tyler and Rachel Bilson, all of whom appreciate the designer's fresh, feminine perspective, playful way with color and figure-flattering silhouettes. For spring 2012, Taylor went in a modern-meets-ethereal direction with an abundance of sparkle, collage effects and pretty floral prints.
In addition to helming her line, Taylor is also mom to three young children, and works with charities including Dress for Success, the North Shore Animal League, the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, CFDA's Fashion for Action and the Children's Dream Foundation, along with being co-chair of the NYC Shop for Opera benefit.
In short, she makes the rest of us look like slackers. (Knock it off, Rebecca!) The Fashion Informer's Lauren David Peden grabbed a few minutes with the multi-tasking designer just before the holidays to talk the three Cs: Christmas, Champagne and Chanel.
What's your favorite holiday memory?
My Christmas in Norway in 1979. My auntie was a sugar plum fairy in The Nutcracker and we went on a horse drawn sled. Magic!
What is one thing I will always find in your fridge, and one thing I will never find there?
Champagne for sure. You will never find meat in my fridge.
What's the last book you read?
Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese.
What is your computer/desktop screensaver image?
A picture of my three children.
What would you like to be doing if you weren't a designer?
A make-up artist, I absolutely love beauty products!
What's your favorite street in Manhattan? In Brooklyn?
Probably a small street in South Street Seaport; I love history. Also, 5th Ave in Brooklyn, where I live; all you need is at your finger tips.
Tell me about your favorite item of clothing/jewelry and why it's so special to you.
My heart shaped diamond necklace, it is special to me because my sister Tory (a jewelry designer) made it for me.
What one beauty/grooming product would you never leave home without?
Diorshow Mascara, Chanel lipgloss.
Who would play you in the movie of your life?
Naomi Watts (I'm flattering myself).
What's your favorite restaurant in the world, and what's your favorite dish there?
Mercer Kitchen, they have the most amazing shrimp salad with champagne vinaigrette.
Biggest difference between life in New Zealand and life in New York?
Everything in New York is at warp speed! And in New Zealand, not so much.
What's your favorite vintage store or flea market and what's your all-time favorite flea market find?
Clignancourt in Paris. An old window that my husband and I turned into a mirror.
What makes you nervous?
Flying, I hate to fly.
When are you happiest?
On the beach with my family on a beautiful day.