Alexa Chung’s Learning Curve

Alexa Chung for AG

Alexa Chung for AG

“I’m British. I’m never warm. That’s why I wanted to take a stab designing summer wear,” explains Alexa Chung over the phone from London last week, referring to the spring/summer capsule collection she designed for denim brand AG Jeans. The 30-piece line, which launched last week, runs the gamut of denim design, from overalls and high-waisted trousers, to mini dresses and jean skirts.

The project took nearly a year to produce, with the British fashion muse traveling between Europe, New York, and L.A. to attend fittings, sample materials and washes, and scavenge for vintage jeans—“My closet benefited hugely!” she says—with the L.A.-based AG team. The brand, she says, allowed her almost too much creative freedom. “It actually became a problem because I’m used to limitations,” says Chung. “I think it takes knowing your brand really well to let someone else come in and do what they want with it. I’m grateful they treated me like a proper designer— even though I didn’t know the terminology at all. I’d say, ‘You know the thing that you stitch up a bit?’ and they’d say, ‘The hem?’”

The results combine her widely coveted style with a host of inspirations. The Sex Pistols, Jane Birkin in a pair of beaten up flairs, and an old 1960s motor bike gang were just a few of the many references that graced her mood board. The starting point for the overalls, meanwhile, was a vintage pair from her own closet. “Mine are baggy and unflattering though, so I wanted to make a style where you can actually see the body,” she explains. “I would pair them with a Victorian or floral blouse—something ultra-feminine or sheer.” Street style snappers, prepare yourselves…