Words and styling by SALLY MATTHEWS
Photography byPAVEL HAVLICEK
NICOLE RICHIE’s career is moving so fast,
it’s a struggle for her to find the time to arrange her
upcoming nuptials – Bazaar meets the girl leaving
both her former Hollywood car-crash contemporaries
and her days as a single girl far behind
Top, Dhs6,000; skirt,
Dhs15,300; shoes, Dhs3,500,
all Louis Vuitton.
October 2010|Harper’s BAZAAR|169
estled away in California,
overlooking the glistening
a fabulous Spanish-style villa set
high up in the Los Angeles hills.
Just weeks before her final hurrah as a
single girl, Nicole Richie pulls up at the
house to meet Bazaar Arabia’s team, amid
wardnings of paparazzi in hot pursuit. In the
are quickly boarded up and the crew put on
from the womenswear collection she designs,
Winter Kate, with baggy faded jeans and
battered Lanvin ballet pumps. In the last seven
years, Nicole has successfully transformed
herself from a rebellious reality television
a style icon, successful entrepreneur and
devoted mother of two. Bursting with energy,
she jokes with the team and it’s not long before
struck by how naturally beautiful she is. Her
skin is flawless – she has minimal make-up on
a mane of chocolate brown hair (which she’s
since dyed a more bridal shade of blonde)
Nicole spies the rail of clothes and accessories
we have flown over from Paris for her and
heads straight for it, smiling a seal of approval
as she paws through Louis Vuitton’s 1950sstyle dresses.“I love to play dress-up,”she says.
“I do so many photo shoots where I’m made to
look how you would expect me to, but I’m
only 29 and not stuck in my ways so it’s fun to
try something different and new this time.”
With Stepford Wife-esque dresses and
departure from Nicole’s trademark bohemian
style, albeit one which has put her on bestdressedlistsallovertheworldandprovidedthe
launch pad for two successful fashion lines;
accessories brand House of Harlow 1960
(named after her two-year-old daughter), and
Winter Kate, Nicole’s first clothing line which
launched in the US earlier this year (see page
94 for an in depth look at the collections).
Talking fashion with Nicole is like chatting
to a friend I have known for years. We both
profess our love for Isabel Marant – “I am kind
of obsessed with her right now,”she exclaims.
The French designer’s edgy rock ‘n’ roll vibe
mirrors Nicole’s own inspiration for Winter
Kate – she cites legendary Rolling Stones
guitarist Keith Richards and her mum, Brenda,
as her style icons. ➤
170|Harper’s BAZAAR|October 2010
Dress, Dhs15,900 and
bag, Dhs21,000, Louis
Vuitton. Bodysuit and
stockings, stylist’s own.
Ring, Nicole’s own.
Dress, Dhs18,000, and bag,
Dhs8,650, Louis Vuitton.
Gloves, stylist’s own.
Earrings, Nicole’s own.
172|Harper’s BAZAAR|October 2010
her into the media spotlight. Subsequent runins with the law and stints in rehab fuelled the
media’s obsession with Nicole as she
simultaneously became the poster girl for the
size zero phenomenon.“You know, that didn’t
affect me at all,”she claims of the attention she
received over her dramatic weight-loss, “the
only people that it affected were those who
read it and believed it”.
Today she is slim and healthy, nothing like
of the tabloid press.“Carrying around two kids
at the same time will definitely keep you fit,
and tone your arms,” she laughs. She also
credits working out with a personal trainer –
“When my crazy schedule allows me the time”
– for keeping her in shape and resolutely
declares that she is going to start running by
presumable wedding prep measure.
As we gear up to shoot the iconic Louis
the brand’s A/W ’10 show, word reaches us
that the paparazzi have found their way into
the neighbouring house and are now hiding
out in the bushes waiting to catch a glimpse of
their target. Concerns over the prowling
174|Harper’s BAZAAR|October 2010
pictures of any wedding-related activity)
prompt the first crack in Nicole’s laid-back,
sunny disposition. Discussing“them”is strictly
off limits, although as we shoo the last of them
away I wonder whether this is normal for her
– “Every day is the same,” she says, eyes cast
downwards solemnly. The elephant in the
room raises its head again – a week earlier
Linday Lohan was released after a brief stint in
jail, while just a week after the shoot Paris
Hilton is arrested in possession of drugs – it
seems alien that Nicole was once part of the
Hollywood bad gal troupe herself. I ask her
scene.The answer is simple: family, specifically
Joel and the couple’s two children. “I can’t
speak for anyone else, but for me it was having
great relationships with my family. I feel so
blessed and happy right now”.
Her daughter Harlow is already showing
signs of inheriting her mum’s love of fashion.
and getting dressed can turn into a 30 minute
thing,” Nicole laughs. “I have learnt to lay her
clothes out downstairs instead of in the
bedroom – it makes things a lot quicker!”I am
interested to know whether Nicole would be
supportive of Harlow or Sparrow if they chose
to follow in the family’s footsteps and pursue a
career in the spotlight.“Right now I don’t have
to worry about that, but I’d never hold them
back from what they wanted to do,” she says.
While we take a short break Nicole sips on
on its head as she starts quizzing me about
Dubai.“I’m fascinated by that place and really
hope to go this year,”she says. When shooting
starts again she keeps interrupting with
questions about the Middle East, “I want to
know everything,” she demands.
As the sun begins to set over the Pacific
Ocean Nicole changes back into her own garb
and wipes off the last of the‘slept-in’make-up
that’s been applied. It is hard to believe that the
down-to-earth girl standing in front of me has
achieved so much already; designer, author,
actor and mother. So what’s left to tick off?
“I want my fashion lines to evolve just as I
continue to evolve,”she muses. With House of
Harlow soon to launch sunglasses and bags, a
Lolita-inspired S/S ’11 Winter Kate collection
in the works and her second novel, Priceless,
out on September 28, Nicole is already going
full steam ahead.
And so back to that impending wedding,
also marked her 29th birthday, with friends
Christina Aguilera, Samantha Ronson and
Masha Gordon, during which Nicole donned a
‘Tickle Your Chi Chis With Miss Richie’,
Hollywood is set to get a glam new housewife.
Just don’t expect her to stay at home. ■
Changing into her first look of the day, a
floral dress ruched up over stockings and
colours what she creates.“I remember sitting
in my mum’s empty bathtub when I was little,
watching her get her hair and make-up done
and modelling Alaïa dresses from her
extravagant collection [which Nicole has now
inherited] and I would say to myself, ‘That’s
what I want to look like when I grow up.’”
As we head outside for the gardening shot,
I am struck by how the 1950s housewife-onthe-edge-of-a-nervous-breakdownstylingsuits
Nicole’s now tamed, formerly dangerous,
persona. Getting into character as a troubled
Betty Draper type (particularly apt given the
Linday Lohan and Paris Hilton) Nicole jokes
that she is going to take the outfit home for
Joel (Madden, her fiancé and the father of her
two children, Harlow and Sparrow). She has
the crew in hysterics with her quick wit and
hilarious one-liners, reminding me of the
TV show The Simple Life. At age 21, she stole
the show from former BFF Paris Hilton with
comical antics which very quickly catapulted
Dress, Dhs56,000;
gloves, Dhs5,150,
Louis Vuitton. Prices
approximate. See
Where to Buy for
details. Hair: Robert
Vetica for Morrocanoil,
at The Magnet Agency
Jennifer Carter. Makeup: Mary Phillips using
Chanel, at The Magnet
Agency. Manicurist:
J’mayka Hamilton.
Jennifer Carter.
Production: Workhorse
Productions, Jewely
Bennett. Fashion
Editor: Caitlin Burke.
Fashion Director:
Kristen Ingersoll.