Stephanie von Watzdorf cut her teeth in the fashion industry under Yves Saint Laurent, had her first paid job for Giorgio Armani, and served as the Vice President of Design for Tory Burch. Now at the helm of her own lifestyle brand, Figue, she is creating a line of luxurious clothing and accessories inspired by her love of travel and the global aesthetic she encounters on her journeys. We sat down with Stephanie and asked her some wanderlust-related questions in celebration of her summer pop-up store in California. Enjoy!


WORK: Sometimes traveling, I see something that is perfect in every way but for whatever reason (not enough space to bring it home, too expensive, a moment of insanity) I leave without it and it then becomes burned into my mind forever as something that should-have-been. Do you have any of those? Does one haunt you more than the others?

SvW: Yes, that happens to me sometimes, but usually I find a way to squeeze it all into my suitcase. There was a blue and green beetle wing mirror in Bangkok I still think about, and there are two beaded talisman dolls I found in the heart of Nairobi (photo below) that I dream of finding again.


WORK: What are your top 3 favorite markets in the world?

SvW: The souk in Marrakesh, the fruit market in Jodhpur and the “Thieves Market” in Goa, India


WORK: List the items you cannot pack a suitcase without.

SvW: I always bring at least two embroidered cashmere pashminas, two pairs of sunglasses (in case one break, which as happened), a small flashlight, my mini iPad, Figue kaftans (good for both warm and cool weather), Weleda Skin Food cream, ginger candies and a book.


WORK: Favorite outfit to travel in?

SvW: I love to wear a long sleeve t-shirt, Figue military jacket, leggings and slip on shoes. I’m obsessed with my Newbarks and Toms.

WORK: If you could rotate living between three places and three places only, what would they be and why? You can divide the year however you see fit.

SvW: I would choose New York in the fall/winter for all the new exhibits, shows and cultural happenings, Marrakesh in the spring for the exotic treasure hunting and inspiration, and the Mediterranean in the summer for peace of mind, good food, sunshine and endless amounts of figs.


WORK: Name one place you think every person should see before they die.

SvW: The bush in Kenya to see all the wild animals.

WORK: Magical cure for jet-lag (or a hangover)?

SvW: There is no magical cure. I try to go to bed for a few hours as soon as I arrive at my destination – even if it is early in the morning. I also drink one liter of flat water on the flight and drink one before I sleep.


WORK: What do you like to read most while you’re home or on the go? Does it change depending?

SvW: I generally read political spy thrillers and biographies/autobiographies. I am a news junkie so I love to read the newspaper and Vanity Fair.

WORK: What makes a magazine great?

SvW: Interesting stories and beautiful photography.


Figue’s pop-up shop at 1301 Abbot Kinney Blvd. in Venice, California, will be open until the end of September. You can also shop for Figue at the flagship store on Elizabeth St. in NYC and online.

– Katherine Aplin

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