Interview: Chloe Gosselin
Biography of Chloe Gosselin
Born in France, Chloe Gosselin attended the renowned Fine Arts Program at the School of Lacambre in Belgium. Following a decade of travelling the world as an international model, Gosselin returned to school to study shoe-making and production at Ars Sutoria in Milan and at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, where her brand was born. Gosselin’s passion for contemporary art and design, music and priceless vintage artifacts, results in a collection that is not trend led. She soon identified a niche in the luxury shoe market for timeless and understated designs that suit the modern woman and all aspects of their daily lives.
About the brand
Founded in 2014, the Chloe Gosselin luxury shoe brand perfectly blends French cool with Italian craftsmanship. Each shoe is designed in her New York studio and handmade in a remote town a few miles from central Florence. Emphasis is on classic design, the finest fabrics and an exceptional craftsmanship with a distinctive youthfulness and fun aesthetic. Distinctive features such as the classic single-sole sandal, corset ties and curved paneling have led to the evolution of her signature shapes and a highly recognizable brand image. Fabrics range from exotic skins, velvet and suede. A signature design that has gained iconic status is the best-seller ‘Larkspur’, a single soled sandal that is a modern take on the universal open toed seasonal offering.
Previously listed as a ‘brand to watch’, Chloe Gosselin’s ability to constantly deliver sought after collections and classic designs, has reinforced her position at the forefront of the global luxury footwear market. Chloe Gosselin is a 2016 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Finalist.
Official website: https://www.chloegosselin.com/
When and how did you decide that you wanted to be a designer?
I’ve always drawn and created for as long as I can remember. I used to draw both clothing and shoes as a child. But, it is much later, after a Bachelor in Fine Arts and a modeling career, that I decided to be a shoe designer. To me, shoes are the perfect bridge between Art and Fashion.
Was it your dream job?
Well, I’ve had many dream jobs, including singer, painter, and now shoe designer… It is my dream job in the sense that it allows me to fully express my creativity. And I love to be involved in every aspect – from the design to the production – as well as carefully curating the image of the brand.
Which is the first thing you designed and for who?
In 2013, I was developing the prototypes for my first collection. My bestfriend, stylist Chloe Hartstein, reached out and asked me to customize the Datura, now a core pump in my collection, for Elettra Wiedemann. So, Elettra wore a beautiful gown from Prabal Gurung and my pump for the Met Ball. She was stunning! That was not only my first complete design, but also my first red carpet moment and still one of my favorites.
Who’s designing do you admire most of all and why?
There are so many designers that I admire and for different reasons, but if I had to choose one, it would be Alexander McQueen – for his extraordinary ability to tell stories through his clothing, as well as his ability to transform women into this ethereal beauty. He was a true artist.
Whom do you find your muse, your icon, while creating your work?
There are many ladies that inspire me to create. All of them are a bit rebellious, feminine, smart and extremely creatives, women such as Tori Amos, Marina Abramovic, Bjork, Cate Blanchett, Julianne Moore, amongst others. But, my biggest source of inspiration is nature – from flowers and rocks to complete landscapes. All of my shoes have natural curves, like blooming flowers, as well as bright or earthy colors.
If you would have to design an entire collection using just one color, which would be that one and why?
I would pick a soft blue grey that I would then interpret in different materials, such as snake, suede or velvet. Soft blue grey is a beautiful color – it is neutral, but also rich, and compliments a lot of skin tones.
Who is the first person whom you show your sketches to?
Usually my husband David, then my assistant and my close friends, and the rest of my team.
The fabric that you love most of all – silk, lace, velvet… and why?
Any type of exotic leather, because of the unique pattern, texture, and richness of color. They can be mat or glossy, monochromatic or multi-colored, but still look natural and always chic.
If your shoes would have a soundtrack, which one would you choose?
Tori Amos – her songs throughout her entire career tell a million stories.
Do you have any trick to avoid that “blank page” moment while you are at the beginning stage of designing a new collection? Do you watch a movie, or read an old magazine?
I don’t really have a trick and it can be stressful because the Fashion calendar is so demanding, but I usually try to lock myself in a bubble and concentrate only on designing.
If not a designer which direction would you choose in the fashion world and why?
Maybe a photographer or director. I love images and creating them
Photo credits: Jennifer Massaux