NEW YORK — After a three-year run, Patricia Lansing has exited her mother’s company, Carolina Herrera, to spend more time with her children.

Lansing, who was instrumental as a designer and in shaping the brand’s advertising, officially stepped down Friday. She plans to spend most of her newfound free time with two-year-old daughter Carolina and her 10-month-old son, Gerrit. “I feel this is the only time that you have, when they are so little. I thought this would be a good time to step down to focus on them and to hang out,” she said. “I felt very torn. But I didn’t want to be the type of person who showed up less and less because I worked for my mother. If I’m going to work, I’m going to do it full-time.”

Lansing said she plans to continue contributing to House & Garden magazine and, before too long, expects to be dealing with the construction of a home in Barbados where her husband, Gerrit, has purchased property. She also will remain a consultant to Carolina Herrera, albeit an unpaid one.

Aside from her daughter’s “fantastic” eye for design, “very young and fresh ideas” and a keen sense for what is happening in fashion, Herrera said she also will miss her honesty. “She never lies to me, if she likes something or she does not. But I couldn’t convince her to stay. It’s sad, but she has her responsibilities and a young family.”

Ironically, Herrera is the one who sparked the idea for Lansing’s departure. “My mom didn’t start working until I was seven. She has always said she was so happy to have that time with all of us. She told me, ‘One day you might wake up and feel you want to be with your children. If you can, you should do it,'” Lansing said. “She is basically the one who planted the seed in my head.”

But Herrera said, “I did plant it, but I didn’t know it would grow so fast.”

This story first appeared in the June 13, 2006 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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