Nicole Richie and Joseph Altuzarra share their lockdown fashion tips

There is no denying the uplifting effect fashion, and binge watching can have. So when you put the two together, well that's just perfect. Lucky for us, Amazon's Making The Cut design competition series ticks all the right boxes: creative fashion, suspense and drama, fun hosts (hello Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn), and of course, plenty of iconic and stylish guest judges.

These include fashion designers Nicole Richie and Joseph Altuzarra, who sat down with us virtually via Zoom, to chat all things fashion and lockdown.

What made you want to be part of the show?

Nicole: I'm such a big fan of Heidi and Tim and the work that they do, I did an episode of Project Runway before and had so much fun. The idea behind the show, travelling the world and discovering the next global brand, being a part of something that I felt was so special.

Joseph: I'm also a huge fan of theirs, and I loved the idea of being able to come in and give back. I've benefited over the last 12 years of having business, of an incredible group of people who've supported me, I think it's important to give back to smaller designers.

Now more than ever, people look for uplifting content. How powerful do you think fashion can be?

Joseph: It really has the power to bring people together, it can bring them joy, comfort and peace. Today more than ever, to be able to celebrate that, celebrate getting dressed, loving yourself is so important.

Nicole: For me, being around colour, fabrics has always been uplifting to me, that's why I'm in this business. As someone who is currently living in this timeline, there are days where I get dressed, and others when I don't get dressed, both are nice, but I do feel better with myself when I do dress up.

(Image credit: © Kristine Sparow)

What does it take to become a designer, has it changed over the years?

Joseph: I think it has yes, in some ways for the better. I think there was a very traditional track to becoming a designer, you had to go through traditional media, get into certain wholesale accounts. What was eye opening about this show and the contestants was that they were really tackling growing a business in a modern way, that was taking advantage of social media, direct to consumer etc. I do still believe that it comes down to product, making something that is desirable.

Nicole: I've been in this business for 10 years, and to be a part of all the changes that this industry has gone through, even seeing the majority of it being wholesale, to moving to being online, people have to be more creative than ever, and there just not one way to go about it. A key to being in this business is being in a perpetual state of learning from other people, and figuring out new ways to tell your story.

Is there anything you can tell us about the show that we don't know?

Joseph: I was actually really struck watching the show, by how true it was to the filming experience, it was very transparent. The discussions and disagreements we had were all real, so there is nothing that happened that the audience doesn't know.

Do you have any lockdown fashion or beauty tips?

Nicole: I'm drawn to colour naturally, especially in the spring, we've just come out of being cold and wearing black all the time, so to me, an easy way to feel uplifted is wear colour for the day.

Joseph: I'm really into a beauty routine! I've discovered eye masks, which are relaxing and effective and that makes me feel really good about myself.

What's the first thing you'll do post lockdown?

Nicole: I don't even know, I'm so not in the mindset of it being over. Probably go to the beach.

Joseph: I really would like to go to a restaurant.

In Amazon’s first-ever global fashion series, the winning designer from the finale will receive one million dollars to invest in their brand and the opportunity to create an exclusive line that will become available on Amazon Fashion. Tune in on Friday 24th April to catch the finale episode. 

Penny Goldstone

Penny Goldstone is the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire, covering everything from catwalk trends to royal fashion and the latest high street and Instagram must-haves.

Penny grew up in France and studied languages and law at the Sorbonne Nouvelle University in Paris before moving to the UK for her MA in multimedia journalism at Bournemouth University. She moved to the UK permanently and has never looked back (though she does go back regularly to stock up on cheese and wine).

Although she's always loved fashion - she used to create scrapbooks of her favourite trends and looks, including Sienna Miller and Kate Moss' boho phase - her first job was at, sourcing the best deals for everything from restaurants to designer sales.

However she quit after two years to follow her true passion, fashion journalism, and after many years of internships and freelance stints at magazines including Red, Cosmopolitan, Stylist and Good Housekeeping, landed her dream job as the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire UK.

Her favourite part of the job is discovering new brands and meeting designers, and travelling the world to attend events and fashion shows. Seeing her first Chanel runway IRL at Paris Fashion Week was a true pinch-me moment.