90’s it-girl, independent movie maven and eclectic fashion leftist.
Best known for her controversial roles in films like 90’s brow raiser Kids, transgender tragedy Boys Don’t Cry and for performing unsimulated fellatio on Vincent Gallo in The Brown Bunny (widely hailed as the worst film to grace the Cannes Film Festival, ever), Chloe is just as famous for her cult-cool vintage and Victoriana-inspired style.
She marries ladylike frocks complete with scalloped edges, pastel palettes and old world detailing with risque cuts and tough-love leather.
Her long legs are her most prevalent accessory, but I love the way she uses aspects of her look to reference certain eras. It’s almost as if she is half playing dress up; Heidiesque braids here, a racy day at the races there, I’m-with-the-band boots and ghetto girl jools meet mistress of the manor manners.
A self-confessed hallucinogenic user in her teens, Sevigny dubbed the affluent suburb of her childhood ‘Aryan Darien’, and spent her time sewing her own clothes, for lack of other stimulation or interest. After moving to Brooklyn, aged 18, she was approached on the street by an editor at Sassy magazine, and went on to secure a job there. She also modeled for them and later appeared on various album covers, as well as in a Lemonheads music video (you don’t get more 90’s than that, my friend).
Chloe also played the only character in the film adaptation of Bret Easton Ellis’ American Psycho that Patrick Bateman resisted the urge to maim beyond recognition. Perhaps Chloe slips so easily into these peripheral, slightly alienated characters so well because there is a strange duality about her character on screen. She’s sexy but demure, smutty but serene, dark as hell but naïve, all at once. This is certainly the case in Boys Don’t Cry, for which she was nominated for both an Oscar and a Golden Globe (and in which a very prominent mole on her breast features very, well, prominently).
These days Chloe is most often seen in her role as Nicolette, or Nicky, on HBO’s widely acclaimed drama about fundamentalist Mormon polygamists, Big Love. I’m a huge Big Love fan, and it’s amazing how well Sevigny carries off Nicky’s hard-ass, hard-eyed attitude and head-to-toe Mormon getup, French braids and all. Love it!
The best thing about Chloe, besides the fact that whether you love or hate her she’s a truly modern style icon, is that she is an absolute vintage devotee. She happily mingles high fashion with vintage pieces, stating that it’s “easier on the pocketbook”.
I think we should do lunch.