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Chloe's new creative director blends English ease, French sophistication

A model wears a creation by designer fashion designer Clare Waight Keller for Chloe as part of the Fall-Winter, ready-to-wear 2013 fashion collection, during Paris Fashion week, Monday, March. 5, 2012. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

PARIS - Wearability and light shone from Chloe's fall-winter collection Monday unsurprising, perhaps, from the house whose founder coined the original phrase "ready-to-wear" more than 60 years ago.

A sense of spring, not fall, bloomed from the largely off-white array of diaphanous silk blouses, scattered pearls and applique lace flowers on display at a sky-lit showroom in Paris' central Tuileries garden.

Dimensional patchwork in wool that was felted gave the knitwear a playful, sporty ease, with airy lace sweaters. Even the British military parka constructions were cushioned by padding and soft-quilted silks.

One knit effect Teddy shearling in a leather V-neck captured the bohemian chic look of the Glastonbury music festival all with a Parisian neatness and sophistication.

Clare Waight Keller, who became Chloe's new creative director in June, conceded that her move to Paris six months ago could help explain the cross-Channel contrasts in Monday's collection.

"I've just come from London where there's a different spirit," she said backstage. "I love Paris, but the Chloe girl is somewhere in between."


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