Thumbing through the pictures from Karl Lagerfeld’s Chanel show, I couldn’t help but marvel that this man turns out about a thousand variations on the wool suit and yet people keep tuning in and coming back for more. This is especially true when the man, who desperately needs an editor for his shows, turns out ludicrous amounts of outfits, many of which are barely different from each other when viewed at a glance.
But a funny thing happened on my way to a cranky Chanel review. First of all it was blessedly short–and you realize how ridiculous the numbers of outfits we are usually bombarded with by Lagerfeld when I’m calling a show with 67 outfits “blessedly short.” Then around the 35th or so outfit, the morph from yet more white wool suits to white cocktails began. By the time the green gown showed up at number 47, perfectly sync’d with the true to life detailing of the colossal glamorous casino setting, I was nodding along. The back third of this collection is worth the wait. Scroll until you see the green gown and go from there. Even if Kendall Jenner walked the closing bridal look. We’ll forgive her, because when the bridal gown is a crisp women’s suit as sharp as that, it’s a reminder that Lagerfeld still has a hell of an eye for design.
The full show–I know, I know! For heaven’s sake just scroll!–is below.
Continue reading Paris Fall 2015 Couture: Chanel
Karl Lagerfeld got the jump on Resort this season, much like he did last year, with a collection presented overseas. This year, he chose Seoul as his destination fashion show. He certainly attempted to take inspiration from the South Korean capital for the collection as well.
The K-pop craze informed some of his choices, leading to Lolita like childish looks and brightly candy colored outfits that bordered on clown costume in places. (This was especially clear in the few menswear looks, where the oversized two-toned shoes did not help matters.) Unfortunately, Lagerfeld also chose to put his models in oversized black braided hair extensions. On a line up of Korean models, it might have worked. Here the results on the white girls was one of Minnie Mouse at best, and on the few Korean models, a reminder of how Western they work to make them selves look.
This being Lagerfeld, the collection was also in dire need of editing, at a ludicrous 95 looks in all. Many of them were repetitive, and more than a few were reruns of Chanel suiting we’ve seen before. We’ve cut away the chaff, and have the highlights below.
Continue reading Resort 2016: Chanel
So, can we discuss Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld a minute? Let’s be honest and blunt–many of his outfits are just a parade of wool suits. Moreover, many of them are borderline unwearable in life, as demonstrated here by Kim Kardashian (of course.)
So why do people go to his shows, other than the big brand name, and how does he keep them interested though a parade of 97 outfits, of which maybe 40 were worth looking at? By putting on a SHOW. The last few years have seen some remarkable 360 degree, lovingly detailed settings in The Grand Palais, and every season, the unspoken question is how Lagerfeld will outdo himself this time.
Welcome to The Brasserie Gabrielle, a leather-banquette-ed winer-and-diner restaurant that the models milled through before lining up and walking the runway down a line of booths and along the bar. The detailing was as exacting as the better designed outfits, and one could feel that Lagerfeld’s set design skills are going to waste in the Fashion World, he should really be working in Broadway, or films.
Though the space itself was too large for the intimate setting of the real style Brasseriethat Lagerfeld was going for, as the audience milled in, the setting was all they could talk about. Too bad one couldn’t say the same for the endless parade of wool suits that followed. The best of the set are below.
Continue reading Paris Fashion Week Fall 2015 RTW: Chanel
Yesterday, I noted that Raf Simons was striving to match the over-the-top sets that Lagerfeld brings to the table in his Chanel shows. Just to remind you that Simons isn’t even in the same league yet, let us note the flowers used to decorate the set of the Chanel show took six months to make, as each had a motorized blooming mechanism that was set off at the top of the show when “watered.”
Such was the beginning of yet another over-the-top collection from one of the most prolific designers working today. With a collection that was 72 pieces strong, Lagerfeld’s garden inspired line was a brightly colored tribute to the usual Chanel wool suit, many of them with dropped waists and many an exposed midriff that called to mind Britney Spears in her heyday.
When asked, he referred to himself as a well-trained machine. Considering that he is pumping out nearly 100 looks at a blow every three months right now, he’d have to be. We won’t post all the pieces here, as that’s just too many. But the highlights are below.
Continue reading Paris Spring 2015 Couture: Chanel
For some designers, the in-betweener collections–PreFall and Resort–are the lesser offerings. They only present 20 odd outfits instead of the 30 to 40 they do at Ready-To-Wear, collections are presented in photo montages instead of full on runway shows, and the looks are generally more relaxed and everyday looking.
Then there’s Karl Lagerfeld, one of the most chronically ambitious and over-employed designers out there. When it comes to the brand that is his flagship, Chanel, he wasn’t taking any breaks. There were over 80 outfits that walked the runway at Schloss Leopoldskron, the rococo palace and national historic monument in Salzburg, Austria. But they didn’t just walk the runway once. He staged three shows, over the course of the day, an unheard of luxury in the fashion world, where shows occur only once, and then are over.
Continue reading PreFall 2015: Chanel
Where to start with Karl Lagerfeld and his “Feminist revolution” show for Chanel Spring 2015?
He meant well. But perhaps next time, he should stick to shopping at the supermarket.
Chanel, the brand is synonymous with a certain type of 1950s glamour, a time when women and city girls were coming into their own in the work place. The chic Chanel suit is a symbol of an upscale white woman’s freedom. You know, the kind you have while you’re waiting to score that man.
Continue reading Paris Fashion Week Spring 2015 RTW: Chanel
There was a lot to like in Lagerfeld’s standard tour de force couture collection for Chanel. (Sixty-nine looks strong!) As he so often does, he pulled his inspiration from an unlikely source–in this case 1930s architect Le Corbusier, and his fascination with concrete. All of which were festooned with baroque elements.
As anyone who has looked at architecture knows about concrete, it can be used to create fantastical shapes that defy gravity–as long as there are no seams. Couture in the original French translates to “seaming” leading to the joke of the evening that these clothes were Haute Couture without the couture.
Continue reading Paris Fall 2014 Couture: Chanel