Carlos Ortega, the Spanish entrepreneur who owns companies such as Pepe Jeans, approached Sienna Miller two years ago about doing a clothing line.
Ortega thought that since people were already imitating the young actress' style, she might as well make a business out of it for herself.
Now Miller and her older sister, Savannah, a designer who has worked at Alexander McQueen and Matthew Williamson, are preparing for the launch of their line, Twenty8Twelve by s. miller. The name is derived from Sienna's birthday, Dec. 28. With financial backing from Ortega, the contemporary line will kick off for fall exclusively at Bergdorf Goodman in New York, Neiman Marcus in Los Angeles and Holt Renfrew in Canada.
"We have been working on design and development for the brand for over two years now and to see the collection come to life and now almost in store, too, is hugely exciting," said the actress, taking a break from filming "The Edge of Love" in London.
Savannah, who credits her sister as the brand's style icon, said the line is equally designed by both of them.
"When I was designing before, I had always used Sienna as my fit model," Savannah said. "We used to be roommates and she was great for fittings. She would also always give advice on how things should look. She's always had this great sense of style."
The fall collection includes an array of pieces — printed silk dresses, denim jeans, cotton T-shirts and tanks, tailored pants, cropped tuxedo jackets, canvas trenches and leather bomber jackets. The majority of the line wholesales between $24 and $177, with select items, like the coats and leather pieces, priced slightly higher.
"In particular for this collection, we really homed in on dark Dickensian London, French peasant style and Seventies New York rock 'n' roll," Sienna Miller said of the inspirations for the line. "I am immensely proud of our first collection."
Roopal Patel, senior women's fashion director at Bergdorf's, was impressed.
"There is a definite fashion sensibility and there are some really great key items, which have this fun London-Soho edge," Patel said. "The idea is about mixing and matching, and with Sienna's great sense of style, the line is very new and refreshing."In addition to selling the collection beyond the three retailers, the Millers are planning to open their first boutique in London's Notting Hill area. The store is being positioned for a September launch and, along with their clothing, Savannah said the sisters will showcase special pieces of art from young artists in a gallery-like setting. The first commissioned artist is David Cooper, with Chris Roantree to follow. The Millers plan to showcase work from a new artist each season.
"I think that people are getting really annoyed lately about these celebrities that want to call themselves designers," Savannah said. "But I can tell you, Sienna has a real interest and with my background, we have a great knowledge of the business."
Her sister added, "Both Savannah and I have made a very big commitment to Twenty8Twelve by s. miller as a brand and the collections are seriously thought out from start to finish. We really look at each piece, its tailoring and materials, and it matters to us that Twenty8Twelve by s. miller grows each season and that it is not seen as just a fleeting whim on our behalf."
The Miller sisters are set to travel to New York to attend a launch party for the brand at the Gramercy Park Hotel on July 26. The line will open to buyers with the spring collection, which will be launched at the Fashion Coterie show in September in New York. The Millers declined to give first-year sales projections.
Alberta Ferretti's "Rainbow Week" sweaters are back. The designer closed her #MFW show with a few day-of-the-week sweaters, which first debuted on the catwalk last January as part of the pre-fall 2017 collection. #wwdfashion (📷: @delphineachard)