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California Girl

Talia Hancock’s Southern California-inspired style has cross-country appeal.

Talia Hancock

Portrait shot on location at The St. Regis Monarch Beach

Talia Hancock—it’s a name we think you’ll be hearing a lot this spring and in seasons to come. Her chic but casual TH Talia Hancock line of separates (made of pima cotton, some with chiffon accents) are the epitome of Southern California style—but we’d expect nothing less from a designer who was born and raised in Orange County. Since launching last year, her collection has been picked up by more than 100 boutiques across the United States. And, starting this spring, you can find it at Neiman Marcus. We caught up with this designing beauty to talk fashion, cotton and what might come next.

Describe your new line.
The soul of Talia Hancock is pima cotton, and every design revolves around this textile in some way. Our color of the season is Fresa, a cross between a strawberry and watermelon pink. We also ventured into pattern this season with vertical stripes in our signature Blanco and Gris.

Neiman Marcus recently picked up your spring line—that must be exciting...
When my New York showroom told me that Neiman Marcus had placed an order, it was so far off of my radar that I thought it was a practical joke—I almost hung up on their cruel humor. But TH is featured in Neiman Marcus stores nationwide. It still isn’t real to me. I was so freaked, proud, anxiety-ridden, grateful and shocked when I received the first order that I checked every piece and packed every box myself!

What was hardest about breaking into the business?
Trust—getting buyers to trust your line enough to carry it in their stores is difficult when they can easily buy tried-and-true lines that they know will sell. We spent a lot of time and energy sending samples to boutique owners and buyers because we knew that if they owned the items, felt the quality and tried the fit, they would be hooked. It was a huge sacrifice, but it was worth it.

Do you have any style heroes?
My mother taught me everything I know about style. She has impeccable taste and an eye for what’s beautiful, classic, sophisticated and timeless. There’s no one I trust more.

Let’s talk preferences. … Which do you like best—black or white?
White—I’ve never ever owned a better pair of jeans than the Earl Jean straight-leg white denim I bought for $14 at the outlet on clearance when I was 15.