Lauren Conrad says move from reality TV to fashion is 'double-edged sword?
"Being on a reality show and then trying to branch out into designing, it's kind of a double-edged sword," Conrad said Friday in an interview at the head office of Canadian retailer Holt Renfrew, where her debut spring 2008 womenswear collection is now available.
"I would not be able to have the line if I didn't have the reality show first or I wouldn't be able to have it so soon, but because I was on a reality show, you don't get the respect that you want and ... I have done everything to deserve it as far as all the designing and everything that I would've done, reality show or not. Because I got the opportunity so much sooner, people are quick to criticize."
The Lauren Conrad Collection, available exclusively at Holt Renfrew in Canada and in 500 boutiques in the U.S. (and online at www.shoplaurenconrad.com), reflects Conrad's upbringing in Southern California with light, flowing dresses and tops that have clean lines and shapes. All the items are machine-washable.
Conrad, whose training at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles and internship at Teen Vogue were documented in her show, has already created a spring, summer and fall collection for this year.
Canadians looking for warmer winter items from the Hollywood fashion plate shouldn't get their hopes up, though.
"It really is a California brand," said the 22-year-old, who appeared on the popular MTV reality series "Laguna Beach" four years ago before getting her own spinoff series that airs Monday nights on MTV Canada.
Conrad, who has complete creative control over her line, made her designer debut at Mercedes-Benz L.A. Fashion Week earlier this month.
The experience was "amazing" but at one point brought her to tears backstage, she said.
"I actually thought that I had messed up," said Conrad, looking impeccably stylish in a purple dress and black heels.
"I was sending looks out and they were kind of untucked and I was like, 'Oh my gosh, it looked terrible,' and I went out and did my wave and walked backstage and I just broke into tears and I was like, 'Oh my God, it was so bad!' ... I ended up seeing it (later on tape) and I was like, 'OK, it was fine, it was fine."'
Season 3 of "The Hills" returned from a winter hiatus this past Monday and got its highest number of viewers ever.
Conrad says she's willing to do a fourth season of the show but isn't sure about a fifth.
As for the ongoing tabloid speculation surrounding her life, Conrad confirms that she is single, doesn't talk to Heidi Montag (her rival on "The Hills") and still keeps in touch with her ex-boyfriend, Jason Wahler.
She also quashed rumours that a movie based on her show is being planned.
"I think I was doing an interview and they asked if they were going to do a 'Hills' movie, how would they film it, and then people kind of ran with it," said Conrad, who lives in a house in Los Angeles with Audrina Patridge and Lauren (Lo) Bosworth, her BFFs on "The Hills."
"But, no, there's no 'Hills' movie in the works."