To pinpoint one singular thing Sarah Hyland does would be impossible. She holds many titles these days, from actress to singer to creative director, though the latter is a step outside her typical repertoire as an entertainer. Last year, Candie’s for Kohl’s brought Hyland on board as creative director for the brand, and if you’re wondering whether clothing lines normally offer that kind of role to someone outside the fashion industry, the answer is no.
In working with Candie’s, Hyland follows in the footsteps of celebrities from Destiney’s Child to Britney Spears to Fergie, but she’s the first to hold the creative director title. While the standard for celebrity brand involvement is to be the “face” of a line and featured in many of its campaigns, Candie’s took the idea one step further, involving the Hyland in everything from inspirations to design and, of course, brand campaigns.
We caught up with her recently to talk about designing for the brand and which trends she’s excited to bring to life this spring.
What can we expect from Candie’s this spring?
This spring we have a lot of florals in the collection. We’re going pure spring with it this year. We have upgraded our leather motorcycle jacket to a denim version with floral embroidery, so it’s a little bit lighter and versatile for day to night. That’s actually my favorite piece from the collection.
How would you wear that floral denim moto jacket?
I would probably pair with one of our regular tops. One of my favorite tops we have is this sheer top. So it has that sheer sexiness of a floral pattern that you can see through, but then you have a regular solid tank attached to it that goes underneath.
Which 2018 trends are you most excited about?
Mesh is everywhere, and I’m obsessed with it, but I’d never wear a completely sheer top with only a bra or only lingerie underneath. I’d always layer it on top of a solid piece like a tank. I do love the look of an allover mesh dress, like what Dior is doing. It still has an air of mystery and looks especially good over high-waisted pants. I come from a dance background, so I love pieces like that, which remind me of a dance costume.
In terms of footwear, I’m looking forward to mules; I’m a huge fan of the shoes. This is the first year I got to go into our Candie’s footwear design studio and work with the team. We have a lot of pearl details and floral embroidery on all of our shoes, which I’m very excited about.
Where do you source inspiration for the collection?
For footwear, I am more of a minimalist. I love a good mule with a tiny bit of embroidery on it. You always want each collection to be different from the last, but you always want it to be cohesive. So the idea is that with each collection, you’re going to slowly elevate it.
What has been the process as creative director?
My favorite parts are going to NYC and meeting with everyone on the team, the design, production teams, the footwear team—the actual process of it. I like learning how things come to life. Because I’ll go to them and show them a top that I love, and they’re like “no.” So everything is a learning process, and especially in the design fashion world, I’ve learned so much in this process. And they’ve been so open to my ideas, too. While I don’t have any formal design knowledge, I was always that kid who would cut my Barbie’s hair and cut up my old T-shirts, so I feel that it’s always been a part of me.