The perfect slipdress: It's easy, alluring-and almost impossible to find.
It was that motivation that spurred Scout Willis, the 24-year-old daughter of Demi Moore and Bruce Willis, to found her clothing label, Scout's General. "I wanted to make something for when you're running half an hour late, and you want to cry because everything you try on makes you feel worse, and it keeps getting later and later," she says with a laugh. "These are the pieces in the back of your closet that you know will make you feel beautiful, sexy, and effortless."
After a quiet launch last year, Willis presented her Fall 2016 collection during New York Fashion Week this past February, featuring languid wide-legged pants, classic shirting, and flowing dresses in rich tones of navy, light blue, and merlot. "It's a sensual collection," she says. "It's dreamy and romantic, but grounded in this very wearable and simple structure."
"These are the pieces in the back of your closet that you know will make you feel beautiful, sexy, and effortless."
Willis places strong emphasis on materials, including Italian silks and alpaca wool, and vintage prints from France. "It's all about the way it feels on your body," she explains. With the most expensive piece priced at $850 (for a floor-length alpaca coat), she says she is designing with her customer-and her customer's wallet-in mind. "People should be able to look sleek without having to spend a ton of money. I wanted to make something that looks timeless and high end; a gorgeous piece of clothing that is also affordable. For the person I want to sell to, $300 for a dress is still a lot of money, so I want people to be able to buy the clothes and think, I'm investing in this because I'm going to wear it all the time."
Though Willis's roots are decidedly Hollywood, it's clear that she is no dilettante. Following her graduation from Brown University in 2013, she worked for New York designer Lind sey Thornburg (Willis also interned with Jeremy Scott as a teenager). "I do come from privilege, and that's not something that I take for granted," Willis says. "I'm not a celebrity who is like, 'I'm going to collaborate on this line.' I'm the one driving downtown to the factory."
Looking to the future of the brand, she says, "I really just want to perfect the silhouette we have now," adding that she plans to show during New York Fashion Week in September. Over the summer she will host trunk shows to further introduce the collection to the public. In the fall, Willis is also launching a Web site, inspired by-you guessed it-a general store, which will include a section for Scout's General, as well as hand-selected treasures. "I want to sell vintage items that I find, my friends' art, jewelry that I think is cool, all very curated," she says, "almost like Tumblr in a store." Surely they will tumble in.
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