It is not about letting herself be guided by trends. She captures stories and trusts her own vision to create her collections
The art of designing shoes and storytelling
“I have always loved fashion and, growing up, I was obsessed by Jean Paul Gaultier and Alexander Mcqueen. The drama, the storytelling through clothes really spoke to me“Chloe
It is hard to imagine something that doesn’t fit with Chloe Gosselin. But if we were to point out a fact it should be that, for her, it does not make sense to keep up with what everyone is doing. She trusts her own vision to create designs full of simple lines and female curves, from flat sandals to elegant scarpins. Her first shoe collection was launched in February 2014, in essence, overtaken by her creativity, which finds inspiration in music, contemporary art, photography, and vintage aesthetics. For her, the creative process is never the same. Behind every piece, there are stories. And, around them, Chloe Gosselin built her legacy in fashion and art.
The french woman grew up in Normandy and has always known she would like to follow a creative career path. Her history through arts starts with her studies in Belgium, but her closer contact with fashion continued while she spent a decade in trips around the world as a model. After that period, she felt it was time to do something more creative and went back to school. Thus, she studied at Arsutoria School, in Milan, and at the Fashion Institute of Technology, in New York, where she created her brand. The influence of so many cultures and her consolidated experience guaranteed her design’s identity. Who thinks our heroine’s journey ends when her first collection is launched during New York Fashion Week, in February 2014, is completely mistaken. Two years later, Chloe Gosselin was a finalist at the prestigious CFDA/Vogue Fashion Prize and was part of Vogue Italia’s New Talents showroom.
“Sometimes, it starts with an image that inspires me and I will draw textures and colors from it. Sometimes, it starts with a sketch where the shoe’s silhouette becomes the most important element”Chloe
Timeless and refined. This is her style, stamped on her passion for contemporary art, design, music, and vintage pieces. Creating, for Gosselin, is to have a set in mind, a particular moment for every piece to be worn and appreciated. Her brand combines the French cool with Italian craftsmanship to make memorable shoes. Therefore, she quickly grounded herself in the luxury shoe niche with her designs which fit the contemporary woman in every moment of her life. This vision took her creations to international status, and they are now available at the most illustrious department stores in the world, such as Barneys, Lane Crawford, La Rinascente, and Boutique 1. From daily events to important ceremonies, Chloe creates for women like herself the type of shoes she wants. It is not for nothing that her designs became desirable and often chosen in events, as the Grammys or the Golden Globes, by Madonna, Gwyneth Paltrow, Taylor Swift, and Kate Winslet, among others.
The shoe designer can be claimed her own Chloe Gosselin’s client. She draws every shoe at her studio, which will be handmade in a small town not so far from Milan. The timeless design, the best fabrics, and exceptional technique followed by a young and fun aesthetics. If it was ever mentioned as a brand to be observed, today, the designer’s ability in delivering classic and memorable collections reinforced her position in the market. Inspired by nature and feminine forces around her, Las Vegas doesn’t seem to fit with the sophisticated designer, but it has been an enigma for her with its deserts and amazing landscapes. Life goes on, full of curious pieces, stories, and shoes.
Tell me a bit about yourself and your journey to where you are right now?
Growing up in Normandy (France), I always knew I wanted to have a creative job. Drawing was always my first way of expression. I dreamt of going to Paris, but ended up studying Fine Arts in Belgium, and then moving to New York. After years of modeling, I wanted to go back to something creative. I was always obsessed with shoes. They are the perfect bridge between art and fashion to me. After a few years of studying, sketching, and traveling back and forth to Italy, I launched the Chloe Gosselin line during New York Fashion Week in February 2014.
Did you always want to get into fashion? How did you get your start?
I have always loved fashion and, growing up, I was obsessed with Jean Paul Gaultier and Alexander Mcqueen. The drama, the storytelling trough clothes really spoke to me. However, I come from a small town in France and fashion felt so far and unattainable. So that’s why I started into Fine Arts and painting. It is much later after the birth of my daughter than I went back to school in New York to study shoemaking.
Growing up, who was your biggest fashion influence?
Without a doubt Azzedine Alaia. I have always loved the way he worked around a woman’s silhouette highlighting the waist and building volumes around it.
Right now, who do you think is pioneering the fashion industry?
My dear friend Diane Von Furstenberg. She transcends generations and takes fashion to a broader audience, pushing the message, and empowering women around the world.
What is your creative process when designing your shoes? Where do you draw inspiration?
The creative process is never the same, to be honest. Sometimes, it starts with a vintage piece I found, like, my bamboo buckle came from some bamboo glasses, from my friend Shannon Hoey’s archive at New York Vintage. I started to build all the Resort collection with my team around this. Sometimes, it starts with an image that inspires me and I will draw textures and colors from it. Sometimes, it starts with a sketch where the shoe’s silhouette becomes the most important element.
What are some other things you are passionate about and why?
Horses are my first passion and after stopping many years ago I started riding again seriously at 30, and now I compete in Dressage. It’s the thing that keeps me sane and balanced. There is nothing more grounding than to spend time with animals.
Where is your favorite place to travel, and why? If that place was one of your shoes, which style would it be, and why?
With the current Covid-19 crisis and after spending 4 weeks at home, it’s bittersweet to think about travels. I would say France to see my family and transmit my culture to my daughter Sky. I love taking her to my region and visit the Mont Saint Michel or the beach of Etretat. There I would wear our comfy flats Natashya, in gingham, or Nina, in all colors. I love taking my daughter to Paris too. We do all the museums from Orsay to La Fondation Louis Vuitton, my favorite neighborhood is Le Marais. For Paris, I would pack our new Angela sandals, in black, with its comfy chunky heel, and also a pair of our Lucile pumps, in red or black, for the evenings out.
What advice would you give 16-year old you?
I would tell my 16 years old me to be more perseverant and work very hard, but also to trust my destiny and that everything will be ok.
Where do you live most of your time? What do you love most about that city?
I spend most of the year in Las Vegas. I absolutely love the nature here. From my terrace, I can see Red Rock Canyon and I love taking hikes there with my dogs. We are also super close to Valley Of Fire or Mount Charleston. Truly breathtaking.
What are some of your favorite ‘secret spots’ in that city (ex. Cafe, hair salon, spa, etc)?
It’s so funny because when I tell people I live in Vegas, they can only think of the Strip. There are lots of cute places for locals as well that are worth a visit. For the most beautiful donuts, go to Saint Honore. Best Matcha hour, with the coolest crowd and décor, Cafe Gabi. I love the spa at Red Rock Hotel as well. My favorite gym studios are Trufusion, for Barre and Fly Gym classes, and Core Pilates for reformer classes.
Photos: Aline Welter