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Spotlight On: Badgley Mischka

Designers, Persons of Interest  /   /  By Nina Louie

With the perfect dresses to make you feel your most glamorous, whatever the occasion—we are thrilled that Badgley Mischka is part of eBay’s Designer Collective. So we sat down with their design duo, Mark Badgley and James Mischka, to talk childhood dreams, Gustav Klimt, and how to amaze at holiday parties.

Please introduce yourselves to our readers!

We are Mark Badgley and James Mischka. We started Badgley Mischka 25 years ago, and have been the designers and all-around owners of the business since that day.

Did you always know you wanted to be fashion designers?

We both had fashion influences as children, with strong influences from our beautiful mothers and Mark’s gorgeous twin sister. Mark had an idea he loved clothes, always sketching Lucille Ball in her outfits from the television. James tended towards architecture and engineering, intending to design artificial limbs.

What was the first fashion item you treasured?

Mark: A signature Louis Vuitton belt. I had the only one in my high school.

James: Red Fiorucci jeans.

How do you get inspired to design a new collection?

We are always inspired by our version of Old Hollywood—that’s a constant. We are always updating it with modern fabric research, new iterations of beading, and the influences of travel and art.

What themes were you thinking about for your fall/winter 2014 collection?

This collection was inspired by two different mindsets:  the opulent yet structured Vienna of Joseph Hoffman and Gustav Klimt, and the sinuous and extravagant silhouettes of mid-fifties Paris.

What is your favorite vision of a woman dressed to the nines this holiday?

She can be many things—but the most important thing is that she is comfortable yet dazzling—that makes it modern.

What advice do you have for a woman who wants to amaze at a holiday party this season?

There are two things you can do to be your best:

1. Be sure your dress or outfit is fitted well—the simplest look is wonderful if it fits, and the best dress is not great if it is ill fitting.

2. Get an outfit that is a LITTLE bit outside of your everyday, in a classic glam way—you will grow into it when you get those compliments!

Your line extends from shoes to handbags to gowns to coats. Which do you love designing most?

Gowns and evening wear are the core of our business—after all, Badgley Mischka has glamour at its core—and we love infusing that glamour into everything we do—shoes, handbags, coats, and more.

Where in the world is the “best dressed” city?

The world is so small now, we don’t underestimate any city—we can be in Seattle, Paris, Bombay, or Dubai and see beautifully dressed women.

What’s the best thing you’ve bought on eBay?

A 1986 Rolls Royce Corniche II we bought for Mark’s birthday!

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