Heavy black chains weave their way around the décolletage of a tiny black dress. Red and blue blocks jut and clash on a strapless, hip-hugging mini dress. Rife with bold patterns and appliquè flourishes, designs such as these have helped earn Paula Hian international acclaim: one of her dresses hangs in the Louvre’s permanent collection, and countless others have been featured in the pages of Nylon, Vogue, and Marie Claire France. She owes much of her inspiration to European runways and frequently scours France in search of high-quality fabrics such as mohair, silk, satin, and leather. Stateside, her crew of personal shoppers helps customers navigate her 4,000-square-foot showroom, as well as distinguish between mannequins and very quiet, slow-moving cashiers.