Icons: Women in Charge

In British, designer, Fashion, Good Look on January 11, 2011 at 6:55 pm

It’s the year of the self-assured woman. It started with the rise of 21-year-old Leandra Medine, founder of fashion blog The Man Repeller to three prolific women who dominated the runways: Hannah Macgibbon, creative director for Chloé, Phoebe Philo, the genius behind the new Céline and Stella McCartney with her own namesake. Women dressing for – or dressing – other women. Call it a triumph, but these are much-needed voices in a male-dominated industry.

I’d known Ms. McCartney as a designer for adidas, but not as a contemporary women’s designer. Mind you, I was a fan of Chloé despite my ignorance to the fact that she was at the helm.

What can I say? I liked the romantic, free-flowing concept. Never mind the fact that I was too androgy-fem to dress like that at the time.

As Ms. McCartney found herself, her style – and designs – have become more… accessible. I think that’s why she was every woman’s designer in 2010. The British aesthetic is prevalent, but there’s no stereotypes. She’s come a long way. And it’s obvious she represents the woman who mixes high and low, masculine and feminine.

I’ve never, and I’ve mentioned this millions of times, been a fan of floral. But there’s something about the way Ms. McCartney does it. It just works. And you can tame it with a strong blazer, perhaps some leggings, if that’s your thing. Or some statement shoes.

As for Hannah Macgibbon, the new face of Chloé, well, she’s brilliant. Chloé has wanted to become a forward-thinking woman for a while now. And it looks like she’ll finally be able to spread her wings. Sure, she’ll always love feminine, ultra-sexy skirts. But I look at her now, and I see a woman who’s not a slave to trends. She’s understated, and on top of her style.

Lastly, the lovely Ms. Phoebe Philo, the thread that ties the web together. Thanks to her, Céline is a man’s girl. She’s not afraid of exploring that side of herself, and she’s going to be this woman for as long as Philo designs for this brand.

I don’t know, maybe I strive to be like these woman this year. Or, better yet, maybe these woman have finally given me something to relate to. I’ve always been what these women represent. It was just a matter of time before I finally heard voices that were speaking for a woman like me.

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