Friday, 3 October 2008

The French chic set

Parisian fashionistas have that certain "gamine-ness" and look effortlessly chic whether in Saint Germain or the hip Marais area. They are an inspiration and while all eyes are on the runways it's the French labels that embody this spirit that retailers are homing in on.

Of course French department stores have known about the likes of Les Prairies de Paris and Madame a Paris for ages but now the French chic set of labels are multiplying and going overseas.

The Paris trade show Tranoi is an excellent place to hunt for these new Parisian spirit labels, hot new one Heimstone is setting the cash registers alight at Selfridges and Henri Bendel, where fashion director Ann Watson says it's "super cute" and she loves the peek-a-boo cut out detailing on the signature dresses this season. Eurythmic is another newbie, set up by ex-Paul & Joe founder Frank Albou - check out the light as silk print blouses, shirt-dresses, come-hither knits and strict tailoring.
Another fresh looking brand that has been around for years is Le Mont St Michel - I loved the Riviera-chic breton knits and tiered Liberty print mini-skirts.

Many of this set hail from the Paris garment district, Le Sentier in the 2nd arrondisement. Names to watch on the Paris "high-street" include Maje and sister brand Le Sandro, Zadig & Voltaire and Ba&Sh.

But really it's that certain je ne sais quoi of Paris rock-chick meets gamine elegance that is in the DNA of these labels. Check out these girls on the stands at Tranoi - tres chic! The French have been quietly honing this new wave for several seasons but it's time to share! Let's hear it for the likes of Julia Restoin-Roitfeld or Lou Dillon who have garnered enough international press attention to make us all want to look tres chic.

1 comment:

Rollergirl said...

God, have you been in Liberty recently? i died and went to heaven when I clocked the new Apc/Isabel Marant/Cacharel/APC collections.