Shoes on Sale: Q&A with Jessica Simpson

Jessica Simpson has had a lot of roles, from actress and singer to fashion maven and tabloid target. But now, the 29-year-old is adding a new item to her resumé: charity spokesperson.

Simpson, whose grandmothers were both diagnosed with breast cancer, has signed on with QVC and FFANY as the face of this year’s Shoes on Sale fundraiser and is poised to bring her star power to Tuesday’s event, both on and off the air.

“The best thing about the live broadcast is the opportunity to generate so much exposure [for] the charity,” Simpson told Footwear News. “[But] this cause is [also] extremely important to me because it has touched my life so personally.”

In addition to creating two, limited-edition styles for the event — a pink ballet flat and pump with ribbon details — Simpson will take a turn in front of the QVC cameras in the days following the live Shoes on Sale broadcast to sell her namesake, lifestyle collection with Vince Camuto, which has grown to include 18 categories, from lingerie and luggage to footwear and swimsuits. “It’s an amazing way to reach a new audience,” Simpson said of the home shopping experience.

Here, Simpson opens up to FN about teaming with QVC and FFANY to promote breast cancer awareness, finding inspiration for her growing collections and getting to know the women sporting her sky-high heels.

FN: How did you get involved as the spokesperson for this event?
JS: Last April, [the folks from] QVC and FFANY Shoes on Sale approached me [about the fundraiser], and I jumped at the opportunity. I know how many families are affected by this disease every day, and it’s close to me personally. I wanted to do everything in my power to support such a worthy cause.

FN: Why is it important to you to be involved in the fight against breast cancer?
JS: Both of my grandmothers were diagnosed with breast cancer — one is a survivor and one passed away. This event helps raise much-needed funds for education [and] research and also helps promote awareness of the disease.

FN: During Shoes on Sale, you’ll be able to mingle with customers in the footwear salon. What are you most looking forward to about that?
JS: I always love talking to customers, being able to share [my shoes] with them and find out what they like and even dislike about the product. It has taught me a lot about the design process.

FN: What can you tell us about your brand’s upcoming debut on QVC?
JS: I’m going to be showing the line on Oct. 18 and 19 on-air. It’s an amazing way to reach a new audience, and I can’t wait to showcase the product. We’ll be selling the footwear, handbags and jewelry for this particular show. It’s going to be great.

FN: You’ve been traveling a lot recently, filming your new reality TV show, “The Price of Beauty.” Have you picked up any ideas for your own line during your travels?
JS: So much! [I’ve been] inspired daily, from Thailand’s beautiful silk prints to Africa’s amazing beading and vibrant colors.

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