Every once in a while there comes someone who defines style not only by the clothes they wear but also by their poise, spirit and personality. Chloë De Soysa is one who epitomises all these traits in abundance.
A fiercely private person who is loathe to give interviews, Chloë still remains a style icon amongst her vintage. An octogenarian, Chloë still possesses the grace and elegance that made her a notable and fashionable figure in her youth.
An artist with an innate sense of colour and composition, Chloë’s paintings greatly influence the choice of colour in her own wardrobe. Muted tones of browns, creams, beiges, with the occasional splash of colour make her ensembles elegant and timeless, the hallmark of Chloë’s style ethos.
In an era where society frowned upon working women, Chloë chose to help the less fortunate through entrepreneurship and new ventures. Perhaps her greatest achievement and a major contribution to society is the establishment of the Women’s Chamber of Commerce where she was the Founder Chairman.
During the 70’s when the Land Reform Act was introduced by the Government of the day, it wreaked havoc on Chloë who owned vast tracts of land. Fearful of losing not only her lands but also her loyal coterie of staff, the ever resilient Chloë came up with an idea of launching a new business called Mariposa with Ena De Silva, another entrepreneur of that era.
Joining forces they embarked on a ready made garment business which gained recognition. In a climate of import restrictions, this formidable duo used their initiative and innovative spirit to create new methods to overcome barriers they faced. With great fortitude and spirit the business grew in to a roaring success.
Immaculately dressed at all times with great attention to detail, Chloë De Soysa is a rare breed of Sri Lankan woman. Born to a wealthy aristocratic family she opted to work and blazed a trail often leaving others in her wake. Classic elegance and simplicity define Chloë, a mix of legend, icon and pioneering woman.
This article first appeared in the Hi!! Best Dressed List Magazine 2014