Zooey Deschanel Recalls Her First Vera Bradley Item as She Partners with Brand for New Launch (Exclusive)

Zooey Deschanel is still nostalgic for her very first Vera Bradley item a small toiletry case she owned in high school

Published Time: 11.07.2024 - 16:31:14 Modified Time: 11.07.2024 - 16:31:14

Zooey Deschanel is still nostalgic for her very first Vera Bradley item: a small toiletry case she owned in high school.

Now, years later, Deschanel, 44, is thrilled to announce her collaboration with the brand, founded in 1982 and renowned for its vibrant quilted bags and backpacks, as it embarks on an exciting relaunch debuting Thursday, July 11.

The new collection features a colorfully printed assortment of handbags, luggage, scarves, and accessories. Among Deschanel's favorites are the Miramar Weekender in Trillium, the Blake Crossbody in Moonless Night, and several leather styles in the Bloom Cottage Cream print.

"It's hard to choose. I love them all," she tells PEOPLE when asked about her top pick.

"I really love the black and white floral. There's a white one that I adore. It's really cute," she adds. "But I also love the classic styles because they go with everything — that's why I'm drawn to the black and white."

Never one to shy away from a bold, kitschy print, the New Girl alum also embraces the bold patterns in the latest Vera Bradley offering.

"I like to coordinate my outfit around them," she says.

She tells PEOPLE, there are five essentials she always keeps with her in her Vera Bradley: phone, lip gloss, hand sanitizer, mints and keys.

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As part of its revamp, Vera Bradley is expanding its bag selection with new fabrications and silhouettes, and also enhancing some of its best selling-styles (think duffles and backpacks) in an effort to modernize the shape, fabric and color.

“After months of analyzing our business, our competition, our customers, and industry trends, we made the strategic decision to pivot priorities and consciously invest in elevating and reinvigorating Vera Bradley in order to restore our brand relevance," Jacqueline Ardrey, President & Chief Executive Officer, shared in a press release. "This next chapter focuses on meeting the needs of today’s dynamic woman, while honoring and celebrating the DNA of our brand that generations of women have loved for more than 40 years,”

Reflecting on nostalgic trends, Deschanel expresses excitement about Vera Bradley making a comeback and offering elevated takes on their beloved basics. However, she admits there are some trends from the early 2000s that she hopes stay there.

"Personally, I'm not a fan of low-rise jeans. They don't look good on me," she says. "But for anyone who wears them and looks great—like Britney Spears did—then go for it!"

"I remember going to film festivals where they would give you low-rise jeans for free, and I would wear them," she adds. "And then I would think, 'Why do I look bad?' It was because they just weren't for me."

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