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Tory Burch on fashion, philanthropy

September 27, 2011 |  9:48 am

I had a great catch-up with Tory Burch on Monday. She's in Los Angeles for a little work and a little play. Her design team will join her in a few days to tour some of the city's old movie palaces for inspiration. Can't wait to see what that turns into next season.

Burch is coming off her first-ever runway show, held earlier this month at New York Fashion Week. Inspired by 1920s Deauville, it was a major success. She said it was a lot of work, but that she loved every minute of it, particularly being able to tell a complete story with the show. (The spring 2012 season will also be the first time Burch wholesales swimwear and costume jewelry to sell at other stores besides her own.)

Burch also recently opened a new flagship boutique at 797 Madison Ave. in New York, in mostly pale blues and greens, designed by Daniel Romualdez, who also did Burch's apartment. "We are able to experiment a little bit with higher price points there, so it will be interesting to see how that goes," she said. The sleek new 797 Madison line of handbags was named after the store. (Burch was carrying the satchel style in gray.) By the end of 2011, she expects to have 60 stores worldwide. A fragrance is also in the works.

On the subject of the rumored IPO, she said, "that's not happening. I'm not going to say never, but for now I have no interest. It's not just about buying out for us. We have the ability to reach a lot of women, whether it's socially or with our clothing. One message is we'd like to get more women in the workforce." 

Philanthropy is another passion for the designer, who recently hired Terri McCollough to be the executive director of the Tory Burch Foundation, which provides micro-loans to female entrepreneurs in America. Former chief of staff to U.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco), McCollough will be charged with finding more ways to integrate the foundation's work with the business.


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-- Booth Moore

Photo: Fashion designer Tory Burch in her new women's clothing flagship store on Madison Avenue in New York on Tuesday. Credit: Kathy Willens / Associated Press