Clare Waight Keller's first collection for Chloe since the mysterious departure of Hannah MacGibbon showed today at Paris fashion week.
There was a strong affinity amongst the press towards MacGibbon's vision of Chloe. Many felt that she had the design down pat and so the arrival of Waight Keller from Pringle was met with a defensive reaction from the old guard. Whether the move was from a sales or personal point of view we don't know, but a new era has arrived. Or has it?
Waight Keller "looked at festival girls, girls on the street and David Bailey's photos of Marie Helvin and Anjelica Huston on a beach" for spring summer 2012. "There's a sense of feminine complicity, sensitivity and sunniness in this collection" she added. She wasn't wrong.
Here was a very pretty, very sunny collection of crepe de chine shirt-dresses, bib-front blouses, drop-waist pleats and soft loose leather jackets. It was a strict palette of Chloe's house colours: nudes, pinks and whites, a little too strict actually and the limited colours felt repetitive.
Waight Keller was clearly mindful of the Chloe archive but in doing this the familiar looks felt a bit old hat rather than renewed. This was a beautiful collection full of wearable, lovely clothes, but with none of the spunk of the past. She was a girly girl, not a cool girl. However, considering the amount Chloe costs maybe it is a smart move to court the woman rather than the girl.