It was a packed house in Rice Village as the Spring 2015 Dao Chloe Dao collection officially hit shelves.
As seen at Fashion Houston last fall, for this collection Dao favored prints—nautical-tinged stripes, burned out squares that read as highly textural polka dots, delft-inspired abstracts, and vivid floral—each of them perfect to mix and match centered around a classic navy palette.
Dao Chloe Dao
6127 Kirby Dr.
"I was inspired by the real woman, and what I mean by the real woman is someone who's maybe 28 to 40s," says Dao. "I turned 43 this year and I just wanted something really classic but with elegance, edge, and ease. That really was the whole base of the collection. Very age appropriate but not boring, not frumpy, not something that only skinny models can wear. I just wanted amazing, wearable clothes."
Dao points to the outfits that she sees on editors at fashion shows as inspiration for taking her signature expertise in patternmaking into new directions.
"My favorite is Giovanna Battaglia, [the contributing fashion editor at W Magazine]. She's in her 40s and she always looks amazing—never in anything overly sexy but just so stylish and chic," said Dao.
A trio of models were onhand to display the 27-look collection, surrounded by oversized butterflies and bubbles in the shop's windows, as if to remind us that yes, spring really is just around the corner. Guests seemed to particularly covet a striped wrap skirt made modern by an unexpected shape, but Dao herself says her favorite is the simple shift dress she wore to take her bow at Fashion Houston. (It's called the Winnie, and you can see it on the model on the left in the top photo.)
"It really embodies those three things: ease, elegance, and edge. It's easy because it's a shift and it's a little bit loose, sexy because it's short, it's edgy because of the cold shoulder trend, and it's also about print and texture, so really everything I love is in that one design."