Caroline is from Boston, but she’s been living in Paris for the past six years. She’s the director and executive editor of Purple Fashion magazine. The Parisian cult magazine was started by Olivier Zahm and Elein Fleiss in 1992 and now boasts an international cast of tastemakers, fashion legends and artists among its subjects and readers. Caroline also works daily on feeding Purple’s most recent project, www.purple.fr.
How did you start collaborating with Purple?
I met Olivier at a fashion show and started working with him straight away as his assistant. Purple is very hands-on and you have to be fully engaged to work here, there is no real start and finish of the work day and one’s personal life and taste organically merge with the Purple outlook. I was so impressed by Olivier and his way of working and making things happen, it was natural for me to fully throw myself into his ideas.
Could you tell us a bit about the birth of Purple Diary? What catches your attention when looking for new features?
Olivier had been trying to visualize the right online presence for Purple even before I had started to work with him. We talked for years about all the possibilities of what we could offer, what wasn’t already there. Right before the launch of Purple Diary, we were still developing a configuration that was really too complicated, and we just wiped the slate clean and decided to go in the completely opposite direction – to do something extremely simple, aesthetically pure, and most importantly very intimate.
Could you explain the idea behind Purple Boutique? Are there any changes in sight?
The original idea of the Purple Boutique was unique, limited edition items made by friends. We have collaborated with Pamela Love, Olympia Le Tan, and Yaz Bukey to create unique pieces. An expanded version of the boutique will launch within the next year.
What is the project you’ve been involved you liked the most? Why?
I am most involved with the print magazine, as is Olivier. It is the most important thing that we produce and it comes before all other projects. I am constantly keeping my eyes and ears open for new brands, artists, designers, writers, photographers. I try to see everything that Olivier doesn’t have time to. Also, now, my main undertaking is the relaunch of our website and researching with Paula Goldstein, our web creative director, on what exactly the online presence of Purple could be.
What are your favorite fanzines – magazines – books?
I am trying to read as many classic novels as possible. I just finished Great Expectations and now I am reading 100 Days of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. My favorite magazines to read are mostly current events-based like New York Magazine, the New Yorker, the Economist, Wired, and Le Nouvel Observateur. I also really enjoy reading Monocle on the airplane!
What are your essentials to carry for a day out?
Canon G11 camera, Blackberry, iPod touch and Atomic Floyd headphones, Mac Prolongwear lipstick, bike keys, book.
You are splitting your time between Paris and New York, what’s worth seeing in both cities?
I love living between Paris and New York. Paris is where my real life is, I prefer the rythm here and how long the days are starting in May. There isn’t the same sense of immediacy that there is in New York, which paradoxically is one of New York’s best qualities.
Who is the woman you’d like to see featured / interviewed here?
File under: Interview