Missy Lipps is a mother, stylist, fashion and jewelry designer based in Little Rock, Arkansas. Her earthy aesthetic and whimsical approach to the fashion industry intrigues her fans while putting them at ease. Her line, Missy Lipps, Real Label, is an environmentally sound collection of wears with global concern at the heart of each design. The sustainability of each garment puts Lipps in a position of forward thinking designers, moving her concepts ahead of the pack all the while maintaining a Victorian style. Airy and enchanting, any figure would look breathtaking and almost, shall we say…magical? Missy Lipps reveals her passions and thoughts for her line and her future.
When did you realize that you had a passion for design and what was that “spark” that got you hooked?
As far back as I can remember, I’ve had an innate attention for color balance and placement. As a teen, I studiously flipped through the pages of European Vogue and spent uncountable hours watching, Elsa Klensch (Internationally renowned fashion journalist) host brilliant people, travel, eat, mingle, and inform. I’ve always been hooked.
How would you describe your label’s aesthetic?
Innovative, feminine, important, interesting and ageless. I incorporate vintage materials into almost every design. It’s the combination of time passing and life here and now…dreamy.
Do you design for women only or do you incorporate men’s wear into your line?
Both. I think fashion/style applies equally to men and women.
What is your most favorite garment that you ever made?
A dress. An aged color of purple, floor length, tapered hem, and embellished with deep shades of purple on the sweetheart neck. I still have it.
Where do you see “Missy Lipps, Real Label” five years from now?
I see tremendous possibility and success on various levels. At the same time, I know that “my plan” isn’t always “the plan”. Sometimes the plan we hang on to gets in the way of opportunity and new experiences. I’m open. I don’t want to leave something out just in case I’m not “planning” big enough. This is an adventure, I just know the path and direction I’m traveling.
What are you inspired by these days and will you be drawing from these inspirations for your next collection?
Where design is concerned, I’m inspired by french fashion of the 1920’s and early 1930’s…so romantic. The looseness, lower lines, and hems are defiantly showing up in my current work.
Do you have any advice for up and coming fashion designers?
Be open to learning more. Inspired ideas are more likely to show up when your mind is exploring.
Your label is eco-friendly. Can you explain?
I recycle and resuscitate existing materials as my contribution to a solution. Globalization has made it seem as if clothing is disposable, because of the lowering cost and massive amounts of clothing in textile production. I use organic cotton threads. Cotton is the largest and the most pesticide and chemically treated crop. Factory pollution, child labor, toxic work environments, illness, water waste, and expansive consumerism…that’s not my vote.
What is the one question you wish someone would ask and what would be the answer?
Q: “So Missy, tell me, you’ve made all this happen…the Independence, the success, a leading voice in fashion consciousness, the go to girl for new designers with an eco-edge, the countless humanitarian efforts and fund raising, sizable contributions to education and female focused programs, and still have such thriving, adventurous, intelligent, and compassionate daughters…how DO you do it?
A: “With pleasure.”
I wish this to be asked of me, because it were true.
Where can people buy your designs and keep up with what you are doing?
My collections are available at The Box Turtle (www.shopboxturtle.com) located in Hillcrest-Little Rock, Arkansas. My work will also be available on my website which is launching very soon. Right now you can find me on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Missy-Lipps-Real-Label/184096758280817?sk=wall to stay current with events and updates.
All photos for this article were provided by Missy Lipps, which she credits to Jason Masters, Lily Darragh, and Nancy Nolan.