The star dishes on how her closet inspired her soon-to-launch clothing line and more
A note to the actress who tried to steal Sheryl Crow‘s leather jacket at an MTV awards afterparty circa, well, a long time ago: She hasn’t forgotten. And you wouldn’t forget either if someone tried to snag your $3,500 leather jacket – after all, it was the first big purchase Crow made after hitting it big in the music industry.
Since the early ’90s, Crow has been writing hit after hit, touring the world and performing in incredibly memorable outfits that still have a home in her closet. “My closet is just ridiculous… but I have my archives,” she tells PEOPLE. “I have everything that I’ve worn on stage – 27 years of touring.”
It was that abundant collection that helped fuel the designs behind her soon-to-launch clothing line for HSN, which hits the network on April 13 and will range in price from $39.90 to $299.90. Digging through her the jeans, boots, t-shirts and leather jackets, Crow picked out her favorite pieces and gave them a new twist. Perhaps most important (and we can’t disagree) was her desire to design the perfect long-lasting t-shirt. “I think there’s nothing better with a t-shirt than washing it 50 times. that’s when it gets really good!”
We sat down with the country star in Nashville to get the scoop on the line, her unbelievable closets and how her kids have helped inspire her.
Why was now the right time to do a clothing line, and why was HSN the right fit?
When I was approached about doing this line, one of the things I liked about it besides that the price point was so great was that I could sew lyrics into the fabric and have it be empowering for women. I think right now we could all use a little empowerment. So that was my big draw. I like the fact that HSN is so immediate, and I like the quality of the clothes. I can sell a really cool pair of jeans that I would wear but not have them be $350 – not even I want to spend that!
What was the most important thing to you when designing the line?
I wanted it to be just like my music — I wanted it to be real and authentic. I didn’t want to make something up that I would never even wear. This stuff is very inspired by the vintage rock t-shirts and has a good rock n’ roll vibe – it’s the kind of stuff I wear every day. I loved being able to go in and say “What if we took this jacket with this sleeve” … and I wanted to be sure that the t-shirt material was good!
What was the design process like for you?
We went into my closet actually – and my closet is just ridiculous, I need to just totally get rid of three-quarters of what’s in there – but I have my archives. I have everything that I’ve worn on stage, and it’s a lot [after] 27 years of touring. We just through, I picked out my favorite pieces and we were able to take them and do a new twist. For instance this jacket I am wearing [above] is one of my favorites all time suede vintage pieces. We just took a lot of the stuff I love and did a new take on it.
Do you have a system with a closet that size?
My closet is very organized – I have a whole area and it’s just boots and shoes. It’s a large closet and it’s the only room in the house that’s carpeted, so my boys play Nerf wars in my closet all the time. there are Nerf bullets everywhere in my closet. It’s awesome, it’s like a playground.
What are the most special pieces in it?
I have an old lace – it’s like a robe but it’s not a robe – it’s like a duster that Stevie Nicks gave me and it’s just unbelievably astounding, probably my most precious piece. I’ve worn it in photoshoots before and I could put it on with a wifebeater and a pair of Levis and it’s so beautiful.
Do you still have your first big splurge?
With my first big paycheck, I was going to the MTV Awards and I bought a leather 3/4-length jacket. It was $3,500, which to me was more money then I’d ever seen in my life, and I went to the afterparty and it was stolen. What was really hysterical about it is, as people were leaving I was looking around, I could not find my coat, I found a whole lot of the black leather coats, and I come out on the sidewalk and there is this girl, this famous actress wearing my coat. and I went up to her and said, ‘I think there’s been a mix up, I think that’s my coat.’ And she was like, ‘Oh no, it’s mine.’ I said, ‘Will you just check the pocket because I think my driver’s license is in there’ and it was. I won’t say who, but isn’t that funny?
Speaking of red carpets – is there a look that makes you cringe when you look back on it, and one you still love?
Oh my gosh – I wore a yellow Cavalli dress, and someone showed up wearing it in peach. Ugh, if I could go back and undo that! One of my favorite red carpet dresses that I love the most was an old Ossie Clark dress from the ’60s. I wore it to a Vanity Fair party at Oscar time and I loved that dress. I still love it! In fact, sometimes I’ll put it on and wear it. It’s really cool.
What style rules do you swear by?
No. 1 Don’t ever wear anything that you don’t feel totally comfortable in. No. 2, make sure your jeans fit, that they look like they fit. No. 3 always make sure you have a good V-neck James Perse black and white t-shirt — those are your go-to.
Are you excited to check out her line?