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
Dateline: Dubai, 2014. Yes, Chanel took the fashionista world someplace far more exotic that mere Brooklyn for his resort show. Dubai–a city where the very rich go to play on vacation. The rest of us can only marvel in amazement at the futuristic city that magically appeared out of the shifting sands.
Yet, for all that Dubai is a city of the future, where technology can defeat the desert, Lagerfeld seemed more enamored of the region’s past with the show he put on.
Continue reading Resort 2015: Chanel
Karl Lagerfeld Builds Grocery Store Inside Grand Palais screamed the headlines. And How.
Going to a Chanel is a bit like going to a supermarket of fashion. There’s plenty to choose from.(Today’s count: 78 outfits.) Many are the same thing is a slightly different format, and the choices can feel overwhelming. Apparently Mr. Lagerfeld realized this, and decided he might as well just go with the obviousness of the theme. No discounts here though. The aisles proudly showed 20-50% markups. Everything was rebranded as a Chanel product. Models wandered the aisle. The A-listers who showed up grabbed the obvious moment to have fun and a photo opportunity. I could write an entire review based on the set alone.
But there were also 78 outfits to look at. (I assume only 78 because Lagerfeld spent so much time on the set.) To open he sent down a swiss cheese version of the tracksuit. After all, no one goes to the supermarket in stilettos.
Continue reading Paris Fashion Week Fall 2014 RTW: Chanel