New York Fashion Week: 5 Questions with Yigal Azrouël

As the Israel-American designer presented his Spring-Summer 2013 collection during New York Fashion Week, TIME spoke to Azrouël about his upcoming wedding, personal style icons and his strong commitment to local sourcing and manufacturing

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Rabbani and Solimene—Getty Images

Congratulations, that was a beautiful collection. Can you talk a bit about the inspiration for it?
This collection, I was really inspired by nature: the rock, the mountain, the desert. And just how nature doesn’t really change—it’s just there is movement around it. It reminds me of a kind of woman I see. It’s for me something that is very fragile. You go through experiences in life, but there’s something that also—if you don’t touch it, it just grows so beautiful. The same thing with the kind of woman I see – she is fragile but very strong at the same time. She is protected with these hoods. There is a lot of masculine and feminine that takes place also always in my collection. So there is ease, and relaxed and soft.

You seem to have a strong commitment to sourcing and manufacturing your clothes locally. Why is this important to you?
For me, I cook my own food—it’s something that I do myself. I inject energy when I make my own things. When you do it somewhere else, it’s for me, different. So I like it this way.

Who has been a personal style icon for you?
I’ve always liked Françoise Hardy. Kate Moss I like. Those simple, beautiful girls that are not trying very hard. They’re really themselves, and they have a strong personality. So it’s not just pretty and beautiful; it’s somebody that is really strong and confident.

You’re getting married in the fall. Which is tougher: planning a wedding or planning a runway show?
Actually, you know, she’s doing the wedding, so I’m just like a guest. You can ask her that question!

What do you do in your downtime to stay energized creatively?
I run. I do yoga. I like to walk in the park. I bike. I skateboard. I go surfing.

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