Stella McCartney is rumoured to be in talks with Gucci about the launch of her own fashion house.

McCartney, head designer at Chloe, has been credited with reviving the flagging brand with her young and progressive designs, which have attracted a large and admiring audience. Chloe however, continues to focus on its core business of jewellery and watches - a rumoured source of conflict with Ms McCartney.

Gucci, unperturbed by its continuing battle with LVMH, is building its fashion offering, with recent acquisitions including controlling stakes in Alexander McQueen, British designer of the year, and Bottega Veneta. McCartney is a close friend of Tom Ford, Gucci's head designer.