It’s been fourteen years since reality star Whitney Port first joined the cast of MTV’s hit-reality series, “The Hills,” and since then she’s quickly grown into a pop-culture phenomenon. From starring in her own spinoff show, “The City,” and designing an eponymous fashion line, to becoming a mom and launching a blog, Youtube channel and podcast, Whitney has certainly been keeping busy throughout the past decade.
This summer, Whitney brings her love of fashion to Rent the Runway with an exclusive capsule collection. Inspired by her own laid-back personal style, Love, Whit features fun and floral prints across a selection of lightweight dresses, skirts, tops, jumpsuits, and pantsuits, with a third of styles made from recycled fabrics and BCI cotton. What’s more, a portion of the proceeds from this collaboration will be donated to Until We Do It, a non-profit organization that is currently focused on distributing 50 million masks to the communities most at-risk for Covid-19.
We chatted with Whitney to learn more about her design process and to get a behind-the-scenes look at the collection.
To start, let’s talk about the collection. Why are you so excited to be collaborating with Rent the Runway?
I’ve always been a fan of Rent the Runway. Their whole model and how they make fashion sustainable is really important — it makes women feel really good about what they’re putting on their body. I had a clothing line called “Whitney Eve” that I ended in 2013, so this will be my first foray back into the fashion industry as a designer and I could not be more excited. This collaboration was so fun to create because I could get as bold and unique as I wanted with each piece, since renting lets women try new things and experiment with fashion without being married to the item.
Describe the Love, Whit collection in 5 words or less:
Happy. Bold. Comfortable. Versatile.
What was the inspiration behind the collection?
As a mom, career woman and someone who loves fashion, I designed Love, Whit based on what I thought I was missing from my wardrobe. I wanted to create clothes that would make women feel empowered when they walk out the door. It was important to me to design this collection in a way that each piece could be worn separately or easily styled together to make versatile outfits.
Describe the design process. What went into creating your collection form start to finish?
I’m really inspired by street style around the world. I like seeing what real women are wearing, not just what models on a runway, celebrities or influencers are wearing. So at the beginning of this collaboration, I went on Pinterest and literally typed in “street style Norway” and “street style Paris,” to expand the fashion bubble that I’m in here as a mom, living in Southern California. It really opened my eyes to what else is out there. After that, I put together mood boards about the different silhouettes, color stories and prints that I love. From there, I worked with RTR’s team to help me make a concise, curated collection.
We know you love them all, but which style would you say is the most rent-worthy?
There’s this one blouse that I feel like people could be possibly intimidated by the color, but it’s so fun and can easily be dressed up or dressed down depending on how you style it! It’s the lime green Citron Ruffle Blouse that has little ruffles around the neck and a tie in the front. I love the femininity of it and the silhouette is so forgiving and so comfortable.
Styles From the Love, Whit Collection
Browse the full collection here.
How would you describe your own personal style?
I think this collection is pretty reflective of my own personal style. I always want to be comfortable and laid-back, but I also don’t want to wear athleisure and sweats all the time. That’s why I wanted to make sure there was a mix of cute, frilly dresses and airy separates that are just as comfortable as they are stylish.
Why was it important for you to have proceeds from this collection go to Until We Do It, a nonprofit organization that is currently focused on distributing masks to the communities most at-risk for Covid-19?
Giving back in any way you can is part of doing your job as a citizen. There are so many people being impacted by this pandemic that it would be irresponsible not to make a donation.
This collaboration is not just about what myself or Rent the Runway will be getting out of it, and it’s not even just about the customer. I mean, you do want your designs to make the customer happy, but you also want to think about how many people you can reach and how big of an impact you can have through the projects you’re a part of. Doing this was a no brainer.
Together, Whitney and Rent the Runway will be donating $10 for every new customer who joins a RTR 2 Swap membership. Use code WHITNEY at checkout to ensure the donation is made.
During this time in quarantine, how have you been bringing a sense of joy into your day-to-day routine?
I’ve gotten into gardening! I’ll go to the nursery and pick out some things or I’ll do a bit of landscaping–it just makes me happy to be outside. I feel like I’ve appreciated nature so much more during this time.
I also just launched this series on my Instagram called, “Wait, What? With Whit” where I’m learning how to do things that I never really had the time to do before. In one episode I learned how to give my husband, Timmy, a haircut. In another episode, I asked a florist friend of mine to teach me how to make a proper flower arrangement which was fun.
Has your style or attitude towards clothing changed at all since being in quarantine?
I think my attitude towards buying clothes has changed since quarantine started. I’ve gone through my closet and looked at all the clothes I haven’t worn in ages or have never worn period (the tags are still on!) and I think about how I don’t want my belongings to own me. That’s why I love renting so much. I don’t have to worry about wasted money or closet space, but I can still enjoy fashion. Especially right now, we should all be responsibly consuming and renting is helping me do that.