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SJP in Big D: She Ate, She Charmed, Her Shoes Conquered

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Image via Racked
Image via Racked

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From her Saturday-night tweet about dining at Mi Cocina in Highland Park Village to her wow-worthy style in person (go buy sheer stirrup tights—now!), SJP took Dallas by storm and charmed everyone in her wake.

We sat down with the lovely gal for a brief interview yesterday, shortly before a personal appearance to promote her new SJP Collection.

So you were in Miami yesterday?
If you say so [laughs]! Yes, Miami, Seattle, Chicago, LA...Dallas.

How is the response to the collection been so far?
It's been overwhelming. It's exceeded I think all of our expectations, I mean, I tend to have low ones anyway [more laughter] so perhaps that's not saying much, but I think Nordstrom has been happy, which has been a great relief and very important to me of course.

How has this compared to your other experiences promoting a line? I know that you worked on Bitten a few years ago. How has it been different?
What's different is that this is a partnership. This is a company that George [Malkemus, CEO of Manolo Blahnik] and I are the sole partners in so obviously there feels much more at stake, I don't take the work any less seriously I mean it's my nature to be completely diligent and committed and involved you know…some might say too involved, but certainly this is something that is very meaningful to me and it's taken me a long time to make this decision and find the kind of partner, find the kind of retailer that one only secretly dreams of.
And I think the difference too is that I feel a sort of assurance about the people that I am working with, the people that I get to work alongside of that I don't know that I felt before and I'm sure it's in large part because of the way that they conduct their business and their history and the respect they have among those in their industry; it gives you a kind of confidence (I don't mean about myself) but the potential.

How long a period of time elapsed from when you decided to call George and start this process to now?
It's been about a year.

And how did you decide on these 25 shoes?
That's when the Nordstrom buyers get involved, that's what they do, that's what they're so good at; we presented them with more than they need, and a consistent sort of story: single sole, color as a neutral, and [the curators] put together the collection that they think suits the doors that we're going to be a part of. That's been our process.

The single sole. Why was that so important for you to harken to the 70s?
I think it's about simplicity and the discipline that it requires, and how hard it is to do well. That it shows every mistake, every flaw, and that all of a sudden, it's really about the beauty, the femininity, and not what you can throw on the shoe but really, how beautiful and simple a shoe can be. I mean, this is [points to the "Carrie" in navy she's wearing] I think really a simple shoe but it's just really lovely, and makes the foot look pretty, makes the leg look longer. The person wears the shoe rather than the reverse, and so it's been really fun to revisit that idea and kind of let it sing again.