Anne Fontaine is known for pristine, classic white shirts that are carefully handcrafted and made from select fabrics. Her attention to the craftsmanship of each item in Anne Fontaine’s collection stems from her love for fashion, which started when she was still very young. When she was young she travelled to Brazil and stayed for a few months in Amazonia where she lived amongst the indigenous tribe. They taught her their customs and traditions which included their use of natural materials for their clothes; this developed her love for fabrics and unique materials.
At a very young age, Anne Fontaine made her own clothes as well as clothes for close family and friends. This developed her love for fashion as well as her creativity in using various materials. When she went Monaco after returning to France, she deviated from her love for fashion and worked alongside environmentalists for the protection of whales.
She then met her husband who convinced her to come up with a collection of white shirts for women. This first venture, conceived in 1993, resulted in the production of about 500 pieces which she had to cut down to several select pieces which became the first Anne Fontaine collection. The shirts were feminine and romantic, which a lot of women consider form-flattering and very classic because of their simplicity. She opened her first shop in Paris in 1994.
In 1997, Anne Fontaine opened her first shop in New York in the United States. This was followed by another boutique in Madison Avenue. Anne Fontaine opened her first shop in London in September 2000. The shop was characteristic of her other shops with white walls and a specially designed long country table at the center of the area. In 2005, Anne Fontaine reached another milestone with the opening of her first shop in Shanghai, China. Her Asian operations continued to expand with the inauguration of her shop in Tokyo.
Anne Fontaine blouses are all perfectly tailored and are recognized because of her signature features such as fine embroidery, a double collar, and some lacework which instantly caught the attention of a lot of women and they consider her blouses as essential pieces in their closets. In all Anne Fontaine shops, the white shirts are neatly folded and packed in cellophane. For her personal touch, she adds a small bag of dried flowers.
Anne Fontaine has not stopped at simply fashion. In 2007, with the help of interior designer Andree Putman, Anne Fontaine opened her first self-named spa in Paris. Water became the theme of the spa. The area blends both urban and natural elements – which have become signatures of Anne Fontaine’s designs.