Chloe's design director Hannah McGibbon has a new obsession: snakeskin. The first half of today's show presenting the A/W '11 collection was dominated by it; a cocoon coat worn with the collar flipped up, a fitted long sleeved top in the skin with fluid, baggy, silk snake-print trousers, a light-as-air chiffon snake print midi dress, a green silk pleated skirt in – you guessed it – snake print paired with a buttoned up apple green shirt, a canary yellow printed shirt worn with a vertical striped pencil skirt... and on and on. Some of the snake offering worked brilliantly (the chiffon dress was a hit) but the snake skin tops especially, looked restricting and a little awkward.
The second half of the show was more familiar “Chloe” territory, all that seventies influenced, Charlie Girl inspired thing they have become the go-to brand for. China blue denim (the ¾ length flared jeans shown with a mustard shirt and brick red bag was a personal favourite), pie crust collars on voluminous chiffon dresses and semi sheer blouses and tailored culottes were the order of the day.
As with every Chloe collection, the devil was in the details, after all sales of their accessories are a major chunk of their global business. For A/W, expect to be lusting after long-strapped bucket bags; McGibbon showed them in various guises, from ultra simple, to panelled (yet more snake!) and versions that buckled up and were finished with a tassel. Other bags of note were a blanket-stitched amythyst coloured satchel with a ruby red flap, which was carried clutch style (something we've seen a lot of this season) and some neat structured handbags. The shoes to get your name on the list for, are the snakeskin mid-heeled courts with a round toe (sound frumpy, but actually are heavenly, especially in the lime green and mustard version) or the chunky '70's sandals.
- Siobhan Mallen in