I love clothing that tells a story. Toile to me is a type of hieroglyphic—the blue clothing dye on this dress depicts pastoral scenes of a French couple in the countryside sitting under a flourishing tree while staring into each other’s eyes. Their expressions are brimming with life, as their romance seems to bloom as beautifully as the foliage they find themselves resting under.
That is why I have fallen so hard for toile. The intricate pattern which emanated from 18th century Ireland was iconized by Chistophe-Philipe at the Jouy-en-Josas factory (why its full title is toile de Juoy) in 1760, according to Masterclass—eventually becoming a fashion statement across Europe. Designers began to print toile on wallpaper, china and clothing, each piece depicting a serene scene of the country. The design is old-world elegance and simplicity at its finest. The fantastical elements of this fabric have led to me buying toile pillows for my bedroom, plastering toile wallpaper on the backdrop all my Instagram stories, and yes buying this Lucy Paris sundress with puffy sleeves and a mask from Etsy to match. ‘Krischic’ is synonymous mainly with two antique elements: a wax seal (my logo) and toile (my pattern of choice), both motifs of timeless narrative.
When wearing this dress in the tower of Pasadena City Hall, a haven of historic architecture, I felt completely in my element. Pasadena is one of those few jewels in California where oak trees stencil the sun’s light on your car as you drive on by, an arcadian paradise with large, manicured houses. While I can’t time travel, a two-hour car ride can project such a scene embodied on my toile—peaceful, charming and brimming with possibility. And let me tell you, during a pandemic, it was just the socially-distanced outing with a dear friend that I needed, in just the right dress.
What’s your favorite fabric? Polka dots? Stripes? Toile? Let me know in the comments and why it fits your personality.
Keeping it Krischic,
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