dept. feminin, toulouse

Resort season will be here before we know it. As I sort through winter and vacation items in my closets in an attempt to get organized, I can’t also help but think of Spring ’12. I’ve already got a few items on pre-order and who better to feed my curiosity than the team at Departement Feminin, who manage an almost intriguing and well-designed e-shop that’s as equally chic as the Toulouse-based boutique.

While on a recent hunt for a certain Celine trapeze bag, Departement Feminin founder and style-maven Carole Benazet spared some time for me recently. Carole gave me the lowdown on what the hits were this season and what to look out for come spring. At a decade old, Departement Feminin is not just a shop, it is a destination. A very chic one that has the intimate feel of a classic, French-style apartment that is brimming with Balenciaga, Celine, Dries Van Noten and a number of those oh-so covetable lines we love.

A realization in 2008 that her clients were increasingly browsing luxury designers and shopping online brought her baby to the web. Heads up: Departement Feminin is the only boutique in the city of Toulouse that you’ll find all your Chloe items. Exclusive, indeed.

Inside Departement Feminin, Toulouse, France.

What fall/winter looks have proven to be the most successful this season?

Carole Benazet: Celine, Balenciaga and Stella McCartney have provided really strong looks this season. We’ve received a lot of positive responses for the Celine panther print coat, the Stella McCartney Prince of Wales oversized coat and also the Balenciaga color-block catwalk dress.

As we move into colder months, what are the essentials for every woman?

CB: You can’t go wrong with staple pieces like a pair of long gloves from Maison Fabre,  and a soft cashmere Sarti scarf.  Also, the more modern pieces like Dries Van Noten’s blue coat, Rick Owens’ asymmetric shearling jacket and of course a pair of Church’s to update any outfit!

For Autumn/Winter ’11, who do you think had the most functional and chic collection?

CB: Stella McCartney

Describe the Departement Feminin client.

CB: Independent, refined and sensible to beautiful textures and materials. A woman who is looking for something new, but also something that could last a lifetime

Inside Departement Feminin, Toulouse, France.  

And if  in a rush for your fashion fix:




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