We’re Figue, your cool friend in clothing form. We’re the vacation of your dreams, the breezy, joyful you strolling on Flamands beach, wandering through the market in the Place des Lices, tucking into spaghetti alle vongole at Scalinatella, poking around the Marché aux Puces, standing and sighing before The Birth of Venus in the Uffizi. Figue is curious, carefree, windblown, dreamy, relaxed, energized, kicky, zippy, happy.
Those words could also describe entrepreneur and designer Liz Lange, who has been living in Figue ever since she slipped on her first perfect dress. “From that moment on, it was all I wanted to wear,” she says. “I was a tight-dress-and-high-heels person, and then I became obsessed with Figue.” Yes, Liz loved Figue so much, she bought the company.
Figue was invented by Stephanie Von Watzdorf in 2012, after she worked in design at Ralph Lauren, Yves Saint Laurent and Tory Burch. Von Watzdorf brought her personal style, her wanderlust and her international eye to the label, making it an immediate, irresistible hit. Figue’s signatures—ikat prints, flowy kaftans, and beaded, embroidered and pom-pommed embellishments—suffused the pieces with originality and personality, gaining a cult following of fashionable women in the process.
Liz Lange was president of that fan club, figue-uratively speaking. She made that role official in 2020 when she acquired the label and became its chief executive officer and creative director.
The relationship is so organic, Liz and Figue could be called soulmates. “I wear Figue in Capri and sightseeing in Southeast Asia,” she says. “I wear it to bar and bat mitzvahs. I wear it on the Palm Beach Lake Trail, where everyone is in some variation of workout clothes; I can’t imagine anything hotter than leggings.”
Figue is right for cocktails, dinner, dancing and dessert. “In Figue, you look glamourous, but you’re also so comfortable.” And Liz knows a thing or two about comfort. In 1997, she reinvented maternity clothes, transforming them from ill-fitting ruffled sacks to chic, sleek marvels. Everyone wore Liz Lange Maternity: Cate Blanchett, Cindy Crawford, Gwyneth Paltrow, Julia Roberts. Nike soon called, asking Liz to partner on workout clothes for pregnant women. Lange designed other collections on her own and with partners before turning her attention to Figue.
Liz’s life has truly led to this. She is a voracious, peripatetic adventurer. “I love to travel and I will not go anywhere unless I do carry-on.” Impressive! But how? “Beach vacations are the easiest. I pack eight Figue kaftans, a couple of rope belts, a few bathing suits, a bunch of jewelry, a pair of flat sandals and a slightly strappy wedge.” Into the LL Bean camo tote they go—and she’s off like the wind. “My eye definitely has to travel. I love hotels. I love the sights, the smells, the inspiration of somewhere new. Travel is for walking. For looking. You never want to be in a car. I walk more steps when I travel than when I work out.”
Liz also loves nostalgia, not for sentimental reasons but for fashion inspiration. “Cher in the ‘70s is my current muse, but not necessarily Cher in a bandeau top and a sparkly skirt. She wore a lot of kaftans in white, pink and purple, and printed flowy pants with a printed top. I love Lauren Hutton in the ‘70s and Farrah Fawcett in a liquid jumpsuit.” And don’t even get her started on Gloria Guinness, Babe Paley, Marella Angelli, Lee Radziwell—the women known as The Swans. “Attractive people in attractive places doing attractive things,” she says, quoting Slim Aarons, the photographer of high society. “I love those women of the ‘60s and ‘70s who had bronzy tans, long hair, big necklaces and the sandals they make for you on Capri. Sharon Tate, Sofia Loren, Jane Birkin. They never made a misstep.”
You could actually say the same about Figue.Liz remembers a boat trip along the coast of Turkey and Greece. Every night, she’d return from dinner at a taverna and sit with friends on deck, eating fresh figs with a cup of chamomile tea. “We’d review the night under this blanket of stars as the boat bobbed. The sweetness of the figs, the quiet of the evening, the comfort of curling up in a kaftan, barefoot with friends. It was magical.”
That’s Figue, a little magic.