Local designers outfit Zooey Deschanel

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Debra McGuire, the costume designer of New Girl, television’s most “adorkable” new show, has struck gold with her leading lady Zooey Deschanel. There are hundreds of websites devoted to the style and fashion sense of Jess, the character Deschanel plays on the Fox series. A mix of cute dresses, comfortable separates and quirky accessories, all in bright colors, the opportunities to highlight Hollywood’s top fashion designers are endless.

Which is why I was so thrilled to tune in May 1 and see Deschanel wearing a dress designed by New Orleans’ own Jolie and Elizabeth.

The Grace Dress - navy with emerald at the band and back
  • "The Grace Dress" - navy with emerald at the band and back

Jolie and Elizabeth was created by Jolie Bensen and Sarah Elizabeth Dewey, two New Orleans-born girls who met after working in New York fashion houses. Taking what they learned from companies like BCBG Max Azria, Betsey Johnson and Alice + Olivia, the two designers realized that their hearts belonged to this city, and came back to create their own line of quality garments that displayed their Southern upbringing and their sophisticated taste.

After debuting their first collection in summer 2010, Jolie and Elizabeth is now sold within seven retailers in New Orleans, and more than 39 retailers across 14 states. All designs are made in Louisiana, which Bensen and Dewey feel strongly about – doing whatever they can to support our local work force and economy.

The dress Deschanel wore on New Girl looked like it was made for her, with a high waist and a gathered skirt, and McGuire was so thrilled with the designers that she requested six more dresses from their recent collections.

We look forward to seeing more of Jolie and Elizabeth on our TV screens next season, and for the rest of Hollywood to take notice of yet another incredible asset New Orleans has to offer!

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