'I tried to make basic pieces that are more fun than just being basic' - Heidi Klum reveals inspiration for debut Lidl range
Wardrobe heroes, lots of leopard and diversity across sizes and generations - supermodel Heidi Klum tells our fashion editor about the inspiration for her debut range for Lidl
The first time I interviewed Heidi Klum, we were sitting on the rooftop terrace of Dublin's Clarence Hotel, talking about the influx of supermodels for an ISPCC show. Fast forward to 2017, and I'm in the rooftop penthouse of New York's Soho Grand hotel with the 44-year-old mother-of-four talking about her Esmara by Heidi Klum collection for Lidl.
In the intervening years, the former Victoria's Secret model has made a fortune, and in 2011 even went to number two on the Forbes list of the world's top-earning models, but her collaboration with Lidl - which will roll out in eight collections over two years - is extremely keenly priced, and Heidi reminds me twice that her outfit of sequined blazer, pussybow blouse (above right) with stretch jeans and court shoe comes in at €67.99.
Heidi acknowledges that she found her inspiration in her own closet as well as from haute couture, from designers on her Project Runway TV show, and looking through magazines. She also watches what's happening in fashion and what people on the street are wearing.
For her first collection, German-born Heidi says: "I tried to make basic pieces that are more fun than just being basic." However, with a mass market - the collection goes into 10,000 Lidl stores in 30 different countries this Monday - Heidi admits she "tried to be a little easy on the silhouette and also with the print".
"For me, I think an animal print, especially the leopard print, is like black. It might read very loud and strong and powerful but really, at the end of the day, it is a staple. It is a long-lasting print. It is something that has been around forever and always will be. No one will ever say 'oh, that's so last season'."
In terms of styling the collection in sizes 8 to 18, Heidi says the pieces will appeal to young people "and also my mum. She is over 70 and there are pieces she will like. Everything about this is supposed to be easy, because women are already very busy. "
Her biggest challenge, she says, was to narrow it down, and the final 85 pieces (including the much talked about €59.99 suede biker jacket, right) were inspired by New York. For the woman travelling, Heidi included what she calls her staples - from a little black dress to jeans, a hoodie and a leather jacket, the "nuts and bolts" - as well as leopard prints, a sparkly bomber jacket, and a blazer "for people who want to stand out a little be more".
Heidi says she envisaged the first range for women "to make their lives a little easier and more 'wow' for the price".
Her second range for Lidl will launch on December 4, and includes party wear and clothes for the holidays.