Falling for MISS WU


Rooted in femininity, inspired by the colorful textures of the ’60s and crafted with the sophisticated pedigree of the Jason Wu mainline, MISS WU is nonchalant dressing done smartly.

Exclusively available at Nordstrom, the second season of Wu’s work-to-weekend diffusion line arrives in stores today! With fall quickly approaching, our MISS WU shopping list is full of covetable wardrobe essentials, from super-soft cashmere striped sweaters to pleated chiffon skirts. Before we charge away, The Thread phoned the New York-based designer to get the scoop on his ladylike must-haves for fall/winter 2013, and as one might expect, we got a crash course in the Wu way of style.

Meet Miss Wu Take 1 & Take 2: A model moment: Meghan Collison (left) in a spring MISS WU Lace Yoke Faille Dress and Magda Laguinge in a fall MISS WU Leather Dress.

“I loved the idea of designing a collection that was a little whimsical, chic and yet still very feminine, which is a [hallmark] of my aesthetic,” says Wu on what he set out to accomplish in terms of creativity and wearability with this newly stocked line. “The fall line is aligned with the spirit of MISS WU, which we really established with season one.”

In January, MISS WU launched with Canadian-born model Meghan Collison as the muse of downtown chic. And for fall, Argentine stunner Magda Laguinge became the heroine of understated elegance. It seems to us that Wu may just have a penchant for models with names starting with M? “I actually didn’t realize that! I guess it’s an M for MISS WU,” he says with a laugh. “The clothes are as important as the girl that wears them. I’ve known Meghan and Magda for a long time. Each girl has a great individual style, and they both really have this MISS WU sensibility that I look for in a model. When they wear the clothes, you almost get the sense that they’re actually the clothes they just have in their own closet, which is what I really wanted for MISS WU.”

Warm Outerwear, Cool Styles: LEFT: MISS WU Genuine Shearling Moto Jacket & MISS WU ‘Gallone’ Jacquard Dress | RIGHT: MISS WU ‘Torre’ Wool Blend Jacket with Removable Genuine Fur Collar, MISS WU ‘Vera’ Lace Print Silk Blouse & MISS WU Paneled Tech Pants

The fall MISS WU collection continues to unveil the personality and relaxed attitude of Wu’s design aesthetic—as well as shed light on his obsession with the ’60s. When designing this collection, Wu envisioned a playful young woman, but who is she and where is she going? “She’s out and about, she’s on the town. She’s traveling a little bit, and so we see the first introduction to outerwear,” he says. “We also see her in different [kinds of] weather, and I just thought, with this season, we’re able to explore further into her wardrobe.”

It’s My Life: LEFT: MISS WU Tech Nylon Puffer Jacket & MISS WU ‘Sofie’ Stripe Cashmere Sweater | RIGHT: MISS WU Pocket Crêpe de Chine Blouse & MISS WU Stripe Pleated Chiffon Skirt

The shoot for the MISS WU lookbook took place in New York’s artsy-cool Chelsea neighborhood. Photographed by Simon Burstall, props played an important role in setting the tone and authentic look into the life of MISS WU. We asked Wu to walk us through his production and concepting process.

“I love working with props, and I used them for both the first and second collection so we could really envision the girl in the space, in her life. I wanted to set up these different vignettes so it looked like she was in different scenarios that would occur in her day-to-day life,” he says. “There’s a sense of realness, that she’s an approachable girl. The lookbook really serves as a window into MISS WU’s life this season. She had the backgammon set that I thought was really charming, as though it were something she would like to play. We also used a Persian rug, which showed her love of color and interesting patterns. These are all things I envisioned she would own in her apartment.”

Wearer-of-Wu: Actress-turned-author Jessica Alba recently donned the MISS WU Abstract Chain Jacquard Dress during a book-signing event for The Honest Life: Living Naturally and True To You.

There was a definite contrast between Wu’s fall mainline collection, which featured a palette of black on black, along with the vivid colors and patterns of MISS WU. If the Jason Wu woman had a one-on-one with the MISS WU girl, what style advice would she pass down? For Wu, the answer is simple: “Keep it individual, keep it feminine and keep it sophisticated.”

Go behind the scenes of the MISS WU Fall/Winter ’13 lookbook shoot for an intimate view of the collection.

Qianna Smith

Photos courtesy of Jason Wu/Simon Burstall & portrait by Jayme Thorton

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