If you’ve ever wondered what being a Hollywood actress really feels like, talk to Hilary Duff, who tells Nylon, “I walked into a mall one day and was mobbed by people. And I just remember feeling really different than everyone else. I felt really loved. But it was weird at the same time.” Things got even more surreal when she signed on to play a starlet this season on Gossip Girl: “I was a little hesitant. It was kind of close to home… then I realized, I would never say something [that Olivia says] like, ‘Oh, this is just for the cameras.’” Her close relationship with her mother helps keep her grounded. “My mom is rad. I feel I’m so much like her.” The newly minted fashion designer—her label, Femme for DKNY Jeans, debuted in stores this fall—also gives readers a glimpse into the thought process behind developing her own line. “I designed clothing that I feel are staples for my closet. Every girl needs a great leather jacket, and every girl needs a skinny pair of black jeans.” Hear more from Duff in the January issue of Nylon, or at nylonmag.com.