Photo: Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Legendary fashion house Chloé brings frilly feminine fun with its diffusion line, See by Chloé. Launched in 2001, See gives budding and broke fashion plates a taste of luxury with lower prices, brighter colors and funkier silhouettes. Avid fans of the line include celebrity trendsetters Jessica Alba, Alexa Chung and Natalie Portman. Tunic tops, micro-minis and patchwork denim help this sister line to Chloé stand on its own.
In 1952, as an alternative to stuffy couture collections, designer Gaby Aghion and partner Jacques Lenoir launched the first ready-to-wear luxury fashion house. Aghion named it Chloé, after a friend. With its classic, bohemian spirit, Chloé has maintained its high-fashion status well into the 21st century. The house owes its ongoing relevance to a knack for discovering visionaries; former creative heads include Stella McCartney and design icon Karl Lagerfeld.
See by Chloé
In 2001, See by Chloé was created as a response to Stella McCartney's more luxe Chloé collection. When attention turned to McCartney's denim and jersey pieces, Chloé decided to capitalize on the consumer desire for modern, sexy designs without compromising the original vision of the label. McCartney gave design duties to best friend and assistant Phoebe Philo, who would go on to replace McCartney as creative head of Chloé after her departure in 2001. After initial success with sportswear pieces, See quickly added handbags, shoes and other accessories.
Laure de Sade
In 2011, Chloé CEO Geoffroy de la Bourdonnaye announced Laure de Sade as design director of See by Chloé. Before joining the See team, de Sade cut her teeth as a design assistant for Isabel Marant and her diffusion line, Étoile. She also graduated from London's famed Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design and won the 2002 International Hyères Fashion Festival with designs made of reconstituted garbage. For See, de Sade says she's focusing on feminine and modern touches.
If Chloé is a whisper, See is a shout. In contrast to Chloé's modest hemlines and neutral color palette, See's punchy hues and prints are risky and irreverent. Ruffles, lace overlays and bows abound, giving See a distinctly youthful feel. The signature bohemian inspiration is still there, but double-stitched denim and animal print trims make it urban. The handbags come in trendy neutral colors, with playful tassels and multicolor zipper tracks. The shoes range from '70s-style platform sandals to wacky wedges -- there's even a sneaker wedge pump. Boho glam seems like an oxymoron, but See by Chloé makes it happen.