Before you give way to Spring cleaning and go out with the old, get in with the new by meeting fashion's newest crop of talent. Spanning from Paris to LA, here are 8 incredibly talented trend-setting designers your stylish self is dying to meet.
The Functional Accessory: Claire Vivier
What we love about this LA-based accessory brand is its nod to timeless French design, which is obvious in the chic simplicity of its pieces. But these handbags aren't just sitting there looking pretty — they are just as utilitarian as they are chic. Take, for example, this over-sized striped clutch ($248) which will fit your laptop, paper documents and then some — all while making a statement. Another reason we are digging all things Claire Vivier? All of her accessories proudly bare the moniker "locally-made" — now that's something we feel good about buying.
The New Queen of Casual: Valentine Gauthier
Dare we say the new Isabel Marant? Yes, we think such comparison hits right on the mark. Valentine Gauthier's effortlessly-cool line, straight from Paris, has received plenty of accolades from the highest ranks in the fashion industry — some going so far as to proclaim her the newest queen of rock-n-roll cool. With an imagination that pushes barriers and experiments with patterns and casually-cool knits, it was only a matter of time before Valentine's lifestyle brand began paving its way stateside. But Parisians aren't the only ones reaping the goods as Valentine's casual-wear line, as it's now also available in US shops like Anthropologie.
Having grown up in London, completing her education in Paris and now calling New York City home, its easy to see why designer Misha Nonoo is a bit of a fashion maverick. With a line that is consistently changing, all the while maintaining its edgy feminine persona and superior quality, Misha counts travelling and rich cultural encounters as her biggest inspiration. The result? Timeless allure married to a modern-day couture sensibility that has stylish celebs like Blake Lively, Gwenyth Paltrow and Pippa Middleton clamoring for more. And with such accessible price points, you will be too. Nonoo Louisa Tunic $385
London-based footwear designers like Nicholas Kirkwood and Charlotte Olympia have been dominating the shoe market for quite some time. Enter Sophia Webster, another fearless Brit, whose whimsical borderline quirky shoes have been turning quite a few heads and feet in a more playful direction. Seeking inspiration from Tim Burton movies and unicorns, Sophia's fantasy-fueled fashion-forward style tests the imagination in more ways than one. And if rainbows, girly florals and iridescent finishes have your inner 6-year-old's heart skipping a beat, you will be happy to know that Sophia's upbeat collection is currently stocked at Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue and Net-a-Porter.
Acknowledging a void in the contemporary handbag market, good friends Emily Gellis and SJ Cho decided to meld their talents and fashion backgrounds to create a high-end luxury line with affordable price points. Flash-forward three years later, Emily Cho bags have received wide acclaim for their refreshing spin, exotic skin textures and sleek designs-even getting coveted time-share on this generation's most fashionable TV show, Gossip Girl (RIP). And at under $700, it's highly unlikely you will be able to resist any of these gorgeous Italian crafted, leather creations either.
Although Sofia Sizzi's RTW line Giulietta might be a NYFW newbie, this Florentine native has been around for quite some time. A CFDA finalist, Sofia counts stints at Gucci, Calvin Klein and Michael Kors as part of her extensive fashion background. Finding inspiration in vintage films, it's easy to see why Sofia's beautiful Old Hollywood-inspired designs have garnered a celebrity following which includes super stylish ladies like Michelle Williams and Miranda Kerr. And yet its her most-recent collection, which is a bit more austere and less feminine than what we are used to seeing Giulietta represent, that has us oohing and aahing the brand like never before.
Menswear Revisited: Jonathan Simkhai
This New York based designer will have your lusting over his menswear-inspired collection faster than JT can say "suit and tie." Sophisticated and tailored for the cosmopolitan woman, Jonathan Simkhai's designs tend to blur the lines between genders for a collection that is subtly sexy and completely in charge. His latest fan? Kristen Stewart was very recently spotted wearing the designer's Pre-Fall 13 bandage skirt at Coachella. If that wasn't enough to pique your interest, check out his most recent collection, available now at Barneys.
Sisters at Work: Veronica Beard
We all know that pulling off the layered look can prove more than just challenging — not for the duo behind Veronica Beard, whom not only mastered the lesson but did so with a collection full of cowgirl references. For their sophomore collection, sister-in-law's Veronica Swanson Beard and Veronica Miele Beard mixed up the label's preppy-esque image by dressing it in full Americana gear — we're talking leather chaps, tough denim and button-down flannels. And while venturing into such territory can at times feel costumey, these girls managed to pull it off and with swagger. Lucky for you, we weren't the only ones who took notice: fashion-forward boutiques like Intermix and Far-Fetch and also bigger names like Saks Fifth Avenue have already picked up the duo's ready-to-wear line for your shopping pleasure.