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Trendsetters at Work: Shoshanna

Talk about #goals.

Founder and CEO Shoshanna Gruss may have started her namesake line at the ripe age of 22, with no industry experience, but she certainly knows what she’s doing. Just ask Jessica Alba, who sunbathes in the line’s printed suits, or even Sasha Obama, who sports the brand’s chic dresses for important White House engagements on the regular.

To outfit your summer wardrobe like the celebs, this collection has got you covered in more ways than one. Don’t just take our word for it—get to know the mastermind behind the line.

What was your first job?
My first job at age 15 was a tennis camp counselor to 3 to 5 year olds out in the Hamptons. It was interesting, to say the least.

How did you get into the industry?
I got into the industry because I felt like the industry wasn’t into me. I started a line of clothing right out of college that was inclusive of more body types because I felt my body was not being addressed.

What is a typical day like for you?
There is no typical day. I wake crazy early, like 4:30 a.m., have coffee, read the papers, answer emails—all before the kids wake. It’s my only quiet time. Some days I am at the office, and it’s all about design and fabric appointments, trim meetings and fittings.

Tell us about your office/workspace décor.
My office is pretty sparse. I never worried too much about decor for my workspace. I like the clothes to take center stage. For my office too, I don’t like clutter.

What are your favorite items in your office?
My favorite items in my office are the photos of my children. All I have to do is look at them and I feel warm and happy!

What’s the best part about your job?
I love the ability to be creative, I love to problem solve and I love that rapid pace of fashion. I am always ready to move on to the next project!

What’s the most daring career risk you’ve ever taken?
Starting my own company at 22 was a pretty daring career risk, especially since I had no formal background in fashion design or business.

Who are some of your career heroes?
My dad is my idol and hero. He is an incredible entrepreneur and an equally as beautiful strong, loving human.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
The best advice I have ever received is to stay positive and don’t live in the negative. Everything is a failure, until it isn’t. Just keep your eye on the prize.

What designs are you best known for and why do you think you do it so well?
We were the first swim line to sell suits as separates as well as the only swim line in the contemporary market that offers A cup [sizes] through DDD. We sell as many As as we do DDDs. We are always trying to figure out the most innovative and edgy ways to flatter the female form.

Tell us about your celeb fans.
The brand has many celebrity fans: Sasha Obama, Reese Witherspoon, Jessica Alba, Eva Longoria, Emmy Rossum, Mindy Kaling, Katharine McPhee—the list goes on! I absolutely love seeing them wearing the collection on the red carpet and out and about in their everyday lives.

In your opinion what staple items should every girl own from your line or otherwise?
Our classic fit-and-flare dress is a style that every woman should own! It’s one of those styles that’s sweet, playful and looks great on every body type.

Finish the sentences below:
Today for lunch I had… I had Greek said with grilled chicken and my 5th iced coffee of the day.

The first website I log onto every day is… is Shopbop to see the new selection.

My usual Starbucks order is…iced coffee black, light ice.

If I wasn’t doing this job, I would… be a fuller time mom and a photographer.

My favorite place to visit is… Bora Bora.

List five things that are on your desk right now… My Letts paper calendar, my family photos, fabric swatches, too many magazines and an iced coffee.

The book I’m reading right now is… You Should Have Known by Jean Hanff Korelitz.

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E! Online (US) – Fashion Police

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