Chloé’s Natacha Ramsay-Levi was determined to get intimate for fall. “I wanted this collection to be more personal,” she said backstage. “To be more intimate. My intimacy comes from this beautiful community of creative women.”
Ramsay-Levi referred to her circle of creative friends, three of whom she asked to collaborate on the show. Sculptor Marion Verboom lent a series of golden totems for the set. Marianne Faithfull did the soundtrack, a reading of 19th-century British poetry. And artist Rita Ackermann allowed Ramsay-Levi the use of five paintings from her archive to adapt as prints on the clothes and handbags.
As for what makes the clothes themselves intimate, that’s difficult to pinpoint, much like the Chloé woman herself, according to Ramsay-Levi. “I don’t want to define her. The Chloé woman is always in movement,” she said. “It’s a woman who questions the world, and expresses her femininity [in different ways].”
To that end, an appealing, quiet tension between feminine and masculine marked the collection as Ramsay-Levi went back and forth between unfussy flou and tailoring. Dots and men’s wear checks gave a pair of belted shirtdresses an efficient energy while small florals delivered a more romantic vibe. And Ackermann’s large figurative drawings on a shirtdress inserted a controlled artsiness.
Ramsay-Levi loves a good classic, and her sportswear pieces were in that mood — blazers, jeans, a proper hunting jacket. She also believes in the power of a well-placed detail, and worked ample extras such as contrasting collars and plackets on shirts and dresses, embroidered trims on skirts and keyhole openings on shirts. She added deep rib-knit cuffs to the sleeves of a snappy checked jacket worn belted over pants, and a solid border to walking shorts in a men’s wear check. For her knits, too, she tinkered with classics, as in a dress in a small, allover argyle pattern and a riff on a Fair Isle pullover with billowing sleeves that made for a lovely point of difference, discreet yet distinct.