Last February, Morgan Fitzpatrick (née Stewart) arrived at the InStyle March Issue party in sky-high Jimmy Choo nude heels and a sheer black silk top. Her hair was slicked back and her makeup minimal. If half the room hadn’t been lining up to meet her, you’d never have known she was once the star of a reality show.
But reality star she was. Fitzpatrick, also known on the Internet as Boobs and Loubs, was one-sixth the cast of Rich Kids of Beverly Hills. On the show, she got engaged, taught the audience how to take selfies, and yes, had many a meltdown. Not a Kristen Cavallari stage meltdown, but close enough.
VIDEO: The Best Leggings for Running
What would be next for Morgan post-Rich Kids, which had its last season in 2016? Wife, yes. Mother? Maybe in the future. Fashion mogul? I think few would expect that out of her.
“I feel like people acknowledge me as somebody who has a legitimate sense of style,” she tells me over the phone, “But in terms of brands or people that are influential in the fashion world? Unless you personally take the time to talk to me, I don't feel like they're very welcoming. It’s almost like somebody has to sign off on my validity for them to be open-minded about me.”
She may have been decked out in luxury garb on the show (she was frequently wearing Hermès and Givenchy in her confessionals), but both during and post-airing, Fitzpatrick has felt a bit of an outsider in the fashion world.
“I think that the reality TV aspect of my life has hindered that a little bit for me. I feel like I get left out of certain fashion events because people think, 'Oh she did that show,'” Fitzpatrick explains.
One group of industry execs that has been welcoming to Fitzpatrick: activewear. After LA-based brand Touché LA got in contact with her via email (“they probably found my email on Instagram”) she collaborated with the brand on a series of pieces that were focused on fabrication, functionality, and color.
“It kept growing, so we kept going,” she says.
What made it keep growing? For starters, its fashion-first approach. While the first collection focused primarily on colors, the second was made from a striped fabric reminiscent to an Alaïa dress. “I was inspired by a shoe I saw,” she tells me.
“Stylistically, I’m not trying to have you look like you’re going to a nightclub," adds Fitzpatrick. "I want you to be able to wear these clothes out after you workout if you choose to. Or just in general.”
Another reason for the line’s success: The constant perfectionism. “The amount of samples that we go through to achieve the exact colors that I have in mind is a trying process that doesn't happen easily,” Fitzpatrick says. “It’s really grown because the quality of the product is legitimate,” she continues. “This is not some sort of you know dialed-in product.”
Fitzpatrick describes her design ideas as “simple and chic” and fashion-forward to the core. And since it’s fashion first (not sport-first), it’s not surprising she employed some of this season’s biggest trends in her latest drop, most notably the trend of see-through materials.
“It was a no-brainer with the translucent jackets," says Fitzpatrick. "They’re just a game-changer. I would wear those out with jeans. They're UVA protected. They’re insane!”
Side note: It’s not lost on us over here at InStyle that for her ad campaign, the designer paired her looks with this summer’s hottest accessory; a pair of Alison Lou “Loucite” hoops in various colors.
Another side note: we have a feeling the InStyle offices will be seeing a lot of these translucent jackets walking around the office.
So what’s next for T.L.A.?
“Size diversity,” she tells me without missing a beat. “That’s definitely a priority. We are bringing different body types into the fold because these sets really are flattering on every single body type, and we probably haven't done the best job showcasing that.”
While she has no current plans of expanding the collection beyond what it is, the idea is not off the table. “It’s my baby,” she says. “I’m extremely resilient. I don’t sleep easy if things are not correct. I would have to be all in.”