When you issue a volume on design/architecture/culture, calling on a celebrated arbiter of chic to write the foreword makes sense. But for its new coffee-table tome, Aspen Style, luxury lifestyle publisher Assouline upped the ante by tapping Aerin Lauder. Not only is the granddaughter of beauty pioneer Estée Lauder a high-powered exec who runs her namesake accessories and home décor business, but she has deep roots in Aspen.
Aerin and her extended family, including uncle Leonard and her aunt, the late Evelyn, have been visitors and part-time residents for decades. Providing context for the book’s photos—a compendium of drool-worthy houses, A-list residents, and postcard-perfect scenes—Aerin writes about why this town’s mountain culture has so thoroughly captivated her. In a sneak preview, she shares some of her own Aspen style points.
Aspen Sojourner: How often do you visit, and what are a couple of your must-dos?
Aerin Lauder: I’ve been coming to Aspen since I was a child, and now my family has a home here. We spend as much time as we can in Aspen. We visit a few times during the winter months and also try to visit in the summer. Kemo Sabe is one of my favorite stores here. They sell amazing cowboy boots with embroidered flowers. French Alpine Bistro Crêperie du Village is my favorite restaurant. I love it for both lunch and dinner.
AS: Tell us about your involvement with the new book.
AL: Aspen is very special to me, so when Assouline approached me, I immediately accepted. This town has many different dimensions and personalities—it was only a matter of time until someone decided to do a book like Aspen Style, and I am flattered they chose me to collaborate with.
AS: How do you define Aspen style?
AL: It’s luxurious but casual at the same time. No matter what the season, people want to be comfortable, but they also want to be noticed. During the winter, you will see beautiful women in fur coats and Sorel boots. During the summer, you will see relevant fashion but worn in a more casual way.
AS: What components of that style does your home here include?
AL: Our home was designed with Aspen in mind. It’s a frame for the nature surrounding it. Inside, we kept the palette very neutral: white walls, wood furniture, and fur blankets. It’s very modern and clean so that we can enjoy the views of the mountains and trees with no other visual distractions.
AS: Have you worked any elements of Aspen style into the Aerin line?
AL: The Buckhorn amber-scented candle was inspired by the Buckhorn ski run [on Aspen Mountain]. The fragrance is an ode to the local landscape.
AS: What would you like readers to take away from the book?
AL: I hope Aspen Style inspires readers to visit and fall in love with Aspen, just as I have.