Hip, downtown designer Katayone Adeli is of Iranian descent by way of a Californian upbringing. Working for Los Angeles sportswear firm Parallel until launching her own label in 1997.

From 1997 until 2003, the Katayone Adeli label was synonymous with flattering, well-fitting pants. These wardrobe basics, along with pieces like slim-fitting leather jackets and quiet, feminine chiffon dresses, earned the brand a cult following among the fashion set and celebs like Gwyneth Paltrow. In 2000, Adeli launched two lower-priced offshoots: 2 by Katayone Adeli and 2 Jeans by Katayone Adeli. The clothes were available in stores like Barneys New York as well as in Adeli’s namesake boutique on Bond Street, sleekly designed by architect Richard Gluckman. The designer shut down the label in 2003—partly because, according to rumor, former president Sean Barron sold his share of the company in 2000 to start Joie.

The Look

Adeli made her name on sophisticated jeans and snappy leathers. Mixing fabrics and textures, she creates her trademark look including fitted, low-slung trousers, soft, draped blouses, cropped leather jackets, and long chiffon dresses. Adeli is best known for her amazing jeans, which boast double loops, flap pockets, streamlined eyelets, and a sassy fit.

Who Wears It

Shirley Manson, Christie Turlington, Tina Brown, and Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, and Lucy Liu, Gwyneth Paltrow,

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