The French connection

By Jessica Moazami, Special to Tribune Newspapers

Ines de la Fressange, the former model turned designer, is bringing her French sensibility to the Japanese casual wear brand Uniqlo. 

The onetime Karl Lagerfeld muse is known for her polished, minimal style and her best-selling book, "Parisian Chic: A Style Guide." She created a 70-piece collection of chic basics with Naoki Takizawa, Uniqlo design director.

The collection of shirts, jeans, pencil skirts, khakis, wrap dresses and schoolboy blazers in mostly neutral, solid colors also includes a few soft floral and micro-dot prints.

Made with high-quality fabrics like French linen, American Pima cotton and chambray, the pieces can easily be worn together in various combinations.

"I believe that one can find beauty even in ordinary objects, and in daily life. I feel less connected to fashion when it is too prohibitive, too snobbish, or far from real life" de la Fressange states in the Uniqlo press release. The collection, priced from $12 to $129, is available at uniqlo.com.

Tommy's girl

Zooey Deschanel, the actress and self-described fashion fanatic, teams up with all-American designer Tommy Hilfiger to create a capsule collection for spring.

To Tommy From Zooey marries Deschanel's love of '60s mod with Hillfiger's clean, American design aesthetic to create a collection of crisp, mod shapes combined with nautical touches for a look that the "New Girl" star calls "modical."

The bright, upbeat group of 16 dresses in pique, oxford cloth, silk and linen consists of retro-inspired silhouettes like belted shirtdresses and A-line shift dresses, all in the classic Hilfiger red, white and blue color palette. Polka dot and striped prints tucked inside the pleats on many of the dresses create a quirky, peekaboo effect.

Standout pieces include a bright red accordion pleated dress with white stripes at the wrists and bottom of the skirt, a white long-sleeve belted shirtdress splashed with red and blue dots, and a white chambray shirtdress with navy collar and cuffs. 

 Nautical-inspired charm bracelets and pendants, resin bangles and two leather handbags polish off the collection.  

The first 14 dresses from the collection will be available at 200 Macy's stores and at macys.com on April 14. The entire lineup ($98-$199) will be available at tommy.com and Tommy Hilfiger stores on April 21.