…and they are stylish ones too. French fashion house Chloé announced today that Clare Waight Keller will be responsible for fashioning the next chapter in the long and reputable Chloé history.
Even though Waight Keller recently left the London label Pringle (Gucci under Tom Ford and Ralph Lauren’s Purple Label menswear before that) to spend more time with her family, she will be taking over as creative director for the brand which; in her own words, “conveys a beautiful sense of effortless femininity and vivacious sophistication.”
This comes after Hannah MacGibbon, the present creative director, has stepped down to seek “new projects” after much speculation. Rumours started to spread during the labels Autumn/Winter 2011-2012 Paris Fashion Show that MacGibbon would be leaving the brand, pending the reception of the new collection. The New York Times even suggested that Chloé was interviewing for new designers before the show. In mid-April, Vogue reported MacGibbon to have signed a new contract with Chloé, with chief executive officer Geoffroy de la Bourdonnaye stating, “Hannah is still with us.”
Wow Chloé, I take my hat off to you in sheer bewilderment. You’ve done almost a good job at denying this and keeping it a secret as McQueen did with Kate Middleton’s Wedding Dress. All of the other designer dismissing labels just threw it out there, but you presented us with the replacement as soon as you announced the abdication…I applaud you. Now, we want to know what has really been going on behind your fashion-house-doors?…“new projects” is about the fishiest excuse I have ever heard.
Founded in 1952, Chloé developed the Prêt-à-Porter market that we know today. In addition to MacGibbon, the label has been helmed by some huge names in the industry. Karl Lagerfeld helmed the label in 1966 with customers like Jackie Kennedy and Grace Kelly. Stella McCartney took the brand in a new direction in 1997, and Phoebe Philo took the wheel in 2001 signing on Kirsten Dunst and Natalie Portman. Claire Waight Keller clearly has her work cut out for her, but I am not worried; she is a fashion industry “triple-initial” just like me (T-L-O), so she better make us look good.