Holly Hollingsworth Phillips on Her Style

The Charlotte interior designer on her fashion rules and must-haves


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Holly Hollingsworth Phillips has a variety of bangles as part of her wardrobe. Here, she's wearing an Hermes H Cuff, a brass bangle from Metrolina, a C. Wonder enamel Evil Eye, and a pair of vintage celluloid carved bangles from the estate of Iris Apfel.

Jonathan Cooper

Erica Hanks: How would you describe your style?

Holly Hollingsworth Phillips: I abide by Iris Apfel’s “More is More” principal …always have.  

As a child Cruella de Vil was my idol for her killer wardrobe. I gravitate toward any embellishments, embroidery, fur, or leather.  The adage of remove one thing before you leave does not work for me.  I add 3 more typically. 

I love the idea of under-dressed and over-jeweled.

 

EH: Do you have an everyday piece you love to wear?

HP: I always have on a Hermes “H” bracelet. They are kind of my Wonder Woman cuffs. I dress unintentionally methodically. My summer wardrobe is cool caftans, or embroidered puebla blouses, sandals, and loads of jewels. Winter is often black leather pants, silk blouse, patterned scarf, and a fun fur or embellished vest with loads of accessories and armfuls of bracelets.

 

EH: What stores in Charlotte work best for your style?

HP: I shop everywhere from J. Crew, Anthropologie, Neimans to Poole Shop. Having a teen daughter gets me to the mall often. I LOVE our local jewelry designers: Addison Weeks, Melvin, and Twine and Twig.  I do shop online often or when I travel. 

 

EH: What is something on your wish list for summer?

HP: Dying for the Calypso Tenaja bustle-back, silk printed skirt I saw in Charleston last week, a Figue embellished army jacket, and Tibi Ophelie mules…the list goes on. I feature my “Weekend Wants” on my blog each Saturday. I already have my eye on many fall items. 

 

EH: What wardrobe items can you not get enough of?

HP: Accessories and shoes are my weakness. I seriously need another closet to house my jewelry and shoes wardrobe. And the selections are diverse from fun Sophia Webster stilettos to Stubbs and Wooten irreverent embroidered smoking slippers. I have a weakness for cowboy boots, turquoise jewelry, and squash blossom necklaces. 

 

EH: Could you tell us what you're wearing in the above photo?

HP: Silk Caftan by Figue; Gladiator Fringe Sandals by San Edelman for Saks; Necklaces by India Hicks Charms; Shark tooth chain necklace by Nest; turquoise coconut shell by Monies. The ring is Murano Glass from Venice; earrings are Gold Shela Fajl Matte Gold 2” hoops – a staple.  I lose them constantly so I buy these inexpensive ones over and over.

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