As a designer that trades in wardrobe classics, Joseph Altuzarra sure knows a thing or two about celebrating the female form. A master of taking a classic - like a pencil skirt - and placing his own sensual spin on it, there's a reason Altuzarra's brand of sexy Parisian-meets-NYC separates is near universally adored by women. With an upcoming collaboration with British e-tailer matchesfashion.com waiting in the wings, we sat down with the designer for a quick chat about this special project. 

Exclusive: Joseph Altuzarra has designed a collection for Matches Fashion

Why did you choose to focus on the shirt dress? Is there something that you love about the style?
When I was starting to work on this capsule, I went through a lot of our past collections and studied my favourite pieces that I felt are signature to Altuzarra. From there, I really honed in on the shirtdress; there's a shirtdress in nearly every collection I've ever done, and I felt that was the piece I wanted to further explore with this capsule. 

How do you keep a shirt dress looking modern and sexy? A lot of younger women might be put off for fear of looking frumpy...
Much of what Altuzarra is about is the mix of French seductiveness with American pragmatism and ease. The shirt dress is a perfect symbol of the brand - it epitomises the mix and meeting of the pragmatic with the seductive. There is a real versatility to the shirt dress in that it can fit a variety of body types, ages and styles.

Exclusive: Joseph Altuzarra has designed a collection for Matches Fashion

What's your favourite piece from the capsule collection and why?
I love all of the dresses, but I think the Dane dress is really special. This is one of the first pleated shirt dresses we've done, and the pleats fall so beautifully. It feels very fresh and easy.

Are there any styling tips you can offer for wearing the shirt dress in a new way?
A shirt dress really doesn't require much accessorising. Adding a belt to emphasise the waist gives a fresh look, or styling it with some knee-high boots to dress the look up can take a woman from day to evening very easily.

The Joseph Altuzarra x Matches Fashion collaboration is available in April. Visit matchesfashion.com for more details.

Exclusive: Joseph Altuzarra has designed a collection for Matches Fashion