Nicole Richie Unveils New Etsy Line, Talks Holidays in the Richie Household: 'We Go Really Big'
The holidays are huge for Nicole Richie — and her passion for the season shines through in her latest collaboration with Etsy.
The fashion designer, former reality star and mom of two, 40, released her second-ever collection with the online marketplace on Monday, in partnership with her brand, House of Harlow 1960. Designed by Richie and a group of creators she hand-selected from the site, the limited-edition line includes homewares like candlesticks, pajamas, quilts, and stockings perfect for wrapping up and gifting to family and friends.
"This is my second drop with Etsy," the star tells PEOPLE. "I started working with them in the spring, but this season, I really focused on gifting, because it's the holidays."
Richie says that her spring/summer line "really focused on a kind of seventies, desert-inspired color palette, working with a lot of rust, burnt oranges, bright reds and mustard yellows." For fall/winter, she's "still keeping that seventies luxe kind of feel, but bringing in a little bit rock and roll — some jewel tones, plush velvets, tiles and a lot of marble and crystal," which she says are "very quintessential House of Harlow."
Richie's brand is named after her 13-year-old daughter, Harlow. She also shares son Sparrow, 12, with husband Joel Madden.
When curating the collection, Richie says she thought about what she herself would want this holiday season, as well as luxurious goodies that others would love, but would never buy for themselves. She also wanted every item to feel unique, like it was hand-made just for the recipient.
"I gravitate towards things that feel personal," she says. "I just think, especially when it comes to gifting, it is very special to have that personal feel and gift something that tells a story, especially when you're gifting something for somebody's home — it's such a personal decision."
By working with independent makers with unique talents, Richie made sure that sense of intimacy would come through.
"Collaborating with these different artisans has been just incredibly inspiring for me and such an enjoyable experience," Richie says. "The whole point of doing this collaboration is to highlight what artisans are making and what they're good at and things that I have connected to."
For example, some of Richie's favorite items are the handmade quilts from Gee's Bend Quilts in Alabama.
"They're this amazing group of female quilters who have been doing it for generations and generations," she says, adding that for this collaboration the women are using "House of Harlow deadstock [fabric] to create one-of-a-kind quilts."
"They can be used as quilts or tapestries, and you definitely get that sense of being handmade, and you can feel the culture and traditions," Richie says.
When choosing artisans to work with, Richie also made a point to select a diverse group of creators — something that's incredibly important to her.
"In this process, I have really focused on the majority being either from California or Black-owned shops," she says. "And that was a personal decision for me. It's not all of them, but it's a majority."
While Thanksgiving may still be a month away, Richie already has plans in place to gift pieces from the collection to her family and friends — noting that she loves to get a head start on the holiday season.
"We go really big during the holidays. And by holidays, I mean, October 1st," she jokes.
"The decorations come out and then I've got Thanksgiving boxes and then I do Christmas the day after Thanksgiving is over. So, we go really big over here," she says.
When it comes to decor, some of Richie's most sentimental pieces are tree ornaments from her childhood, she says, noting that her mom saved all of her and her siblings' — Sofia Richie, 23, and Miles Richie, 27 — most precious pieces over the years.
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"I have a little small box that was my mom's and now it's in my house, and hopefully, I'll be passing them along to my kids when they grow up and move out as well," she says of the ornaments.
The family also goes big when it comes to holiday cooking, Richie says, and she hosts Christmas Eve at her house every year. "I do something with my friends as adults, and then my kids like to do teenage things with their friends and they don't want us around so it's now become two separate events," she says with a laugh.
"The holidays are my favorite time of year," she adds. "It really takes over, but I love it."
This year, Richie says, she's excited to spend time with her close friends and family members again, noting that last year they kept their distance due to COVID-19.
"We had to keep it very small last year and I don't even know if we all got together for Thanksgiving," she says. "So, I'm just happy that we're all able to spend it together. To just be in this together."
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