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When it comes to navigating through life, so much of what we know is passed down from mother to child. In celebration of Mother’s Day, we asked Donna Karan, Lubov Azria, Lela Rose, Rachel Roy, Pamella Roland, Rebecca Minkoff, Rachel Zoe and Kelly Wearstler to tell us, “What’s the greatest advice mothers can share with their children?”

Check out the candid, poignant family photos that each of these designing women generously shared with us…

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Donna Karan: Make time for love. “The best advice a mother can give to her child is that love is about time−the time you spend with others, and time you spend taking care of yourself. You need to find the balance and do both,” says Donna Karan, pictured with her daughter Gabby on her wedding day in 2002. (For her special day, Gabby wore a short dress with an added long tulle skirt, made by her mother, of course!)

Lubov Azria: Live your dreams. “Each of my daughters has a unique journey they are embarking on, and I support them wholeheartedly. I always advise them with what I tell myself every day: Work hard, stay focused on your vision, and follow your dreams. Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, ‘Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm,’” says Azria, Chief Creative Officer of BCBGMAXAZRIAGROUP, which includes BCBG and Herve Leger.

This busy business woman is mother to 6 children with husband Max Azria. Above, Lubov (pictured second from left) enjoys some girl time on Malibu Beach with her daughters Anaïs, 16, Agnès, 14, Marine, 21, and Chloé, 18.

Lela Rose: Conquer with kindness. Designer Lela Rose keeps her motherly advice simple and sweet: “Be nice, be nice, be nice.”

The New York-based Texan transplant is pictured with her two children, Grey, 11, and Rosey, 6, and their two Yorkshire terriers, Stitch and Bobbin.

Rachel Roy: You can make a difference. “The best advice I give my girls, which my mother instilled in me, is the importance of giving back to those in need,” shares Rachel Roy, pictured with her two daughters, Tallulah Ruth, 5, and Ava, 13.

Pamella Roland: Easy does it. “As my children have grown, my best advice to mothers of young children would be to not sweat the small stuff−you let go and let your children learn by making their mistakes, and you have to pick your battles,” says Pamella Roland.

During New York Fashion Week, you can always spot her three children, Cole, Sydney and Cassandra, cheering from the front row.

We offer Pamella Roland in selected stores. For locations, please contact a Designer Specialist at 1.877.543.7463.

Rebecca Minkoff: Search for excellence. “Find your PASSION and give 100%. It may or may not be easy to find; maybe the search will be painful and long, but you will find it at some point. And the feeling of satisfaction knowing you have given 100% brings tremendous contentment,” says Rebecca Minkoff, photographed with son Luca Shai, who will turn 2 in September.

Rachel Zoe: Do the right thing. “Always be kind, always have manners and always be grateful. Never be greedy, never be jealous and never be cruel,” says Rachel Zoe on the words of wisdom she instills in her son Skyler, 2.

Kelly Wearstler: Be a go-getter. “The best advice I can give my boys is the same advice my mother instilled in me: the only person who can make something happen for you is YOU. Be compassionate, be self-reliant, and love what you do,” shares Kelly Wearstler with her boys Elliott, 9, and Oliver, 10.

On Mother’s Day, remember the women who gave—and lived out—the best life advice for you.

(Uh-oh: Still need last-minute Mother’s Day gifts? Don’t fret, we’ve got you covered!)

Qianna Smith
Photos courtesy of each designer

Let’s just call Kelly Wearstler the can-do superwoman of design. From home to jewelry to ready-to-wear fashions, this West Hollywood-based curator of style has been blazing creative trails for over 17 years. Wearstler’s unique point of view as an interior designer was her first claim to fame. She has poshed up some of the world’s most renowned hotels and residences—the Avalon Hotel in Beverly Hills and the Viceroy resorts as well as various private homes in the Trousdale Estates—while also finding time to pen four books that explore her design inspirations.

Unafraid to take risks, Wearstler has built a lifestyle brand for the “charismatic, cultured, and curious”—all qualities the designer certainly possesses herself. Intrigued? Join the Thread as we dive a little deeper into the world of Wearstler.

Downtown Chic: Kelly Wearstler ‘Cyclone’ Foil Print Tank, ‘Hydra’ Crop Jacket and ‘Practitioner’ Denim Pants

THE THREAD: Describe your design point of view. What commonalities do you think your area of designs—fashion, jewelry, textiles, tableware and interiors—share?

KELLY WEARSTLER: My voice as a designer also presents itself in the way I dress—taking risks, breaking the rules, mixing old and new. I have a strong love of color, texture and patterns. I have always been inspired by fashion in my interiors, and now my interiors are inspiring my fashion and jewelry collections.

Pattern Perfection: Kelly Wearstler ‘Arachine’ Silk Dress

As the weather heats up, what spring trends are on your radar? Which looks should women be getting excited for this season?

KELLY: This season, I’m loving stripes and layering lots of jewelry—as well as my cool biker jacket in amazing rich colors and textures.

How does your personal style complement your design philosophy?

KELLY: I love when design elements have a bit of tension in style, material and texture but create one beautiful, harmonious vibe. In my ready-to-wear collection, I love to mix different fabrics together, such as leather and cashmere or leather and denim.

Mini Made: Kelly Wearstler ‘Spirula’ Stretch Cotton Dress

Tell us, are you planning any fun summer escapes? What would be on your packing list?

KELLY: I’m heading to Sun Valley, Idaho, with my husband and our two boys. My packing list always includes SkinCeuticals sunscreen, my Canon G12 camera, a parasol, one of my easy super-cool dresses, my printed Kelly Wearstler scarves and tees, Thierry Lasry sunglasses, Melissa Odabash bikinis and a sketch pad and pencil.

Mod Brit: Kelly Wearstler ‘Artifice’ Tank and ‘Aristocrat’ Print Skirt

Can you share the best fashion advice you were ever given? Who was it from?

KELLY: The best advice I’ve ever received was from my mom: to “take risks and love what you do.”

Qianna Smith

Lainy’s look is the epitome of the modern cosmopolitan girl. As a stylist and blogger, she has a great eye and loves to experiment.

Her bold printed pants grabbed my attention first, but it’s the textural details of her outfit that really stand out. Her draped coat and bejeweled handbag are now on my must-have list!

xo, Crystal

Shop similar styles:

All-White TrendEverything Print | Color-Blocked Handbags

Shop our Editors’ Picks to recreate this look:

Tildon Sandal | Kelly Wearstler Silk Pants | Vince Camuto Satchel

Timeless black and white is looking anything but bland right now. Brazen prints are making all those bright colors we’ve seen for so many seasons look demure. Wear a graphic black-and-white print all on its own, or layer on a pop of color for a statement-making optical punch. Ready to get bold and beautiful? Here are a few Editor’s Picks to get you on your way.

Collective Concepts Stripe Skirt

kate spade new york ‘davis’ capri pants



Lela Rose Lace Sheath Dress | Marni Edition Knit Skirt | Tibi Colorblock Shift Dress
Tibi Silk Shift Dress | Kelly Wearstler Knit Pencil Skirt | Alice + Olivia Drape Front Cardigan

Jeff Powell