Paris is where the fashion is, and where the fashion is there is always Chanel. This is the truth of the world it seems and Coco made it known from the days she fought against the status quo. Even in Rome, Chanel is all about Paris. Karl Lagerfeld does the fashion house much justice. Tuesday night’s Chanel Metiers d’Art pre-fall 2016 show was rather incredible, as the Chanel shows generally are, but there was something more to be seen this time, almost sending off fireworks into the air.
The fashion show stabbed at our hearts with that tender moment shown for the French capital that is still very much shrouded in grief for the innocents that were lost in the horrific attacks. Attacks that have been rocking many cities of late and taking too many lives. “I didn’t know when we started the idea of Paris in Rome that it would be the best moment to show a perfect, romantic Paris when Paris today in reality is the opposite of a romantic city,” Lagerfeld said during a preview of his latest Métiers d’Art collection. “It’s really unbelievable, no?”
This was a show like no other, featuring an 11-minute movie starring Kristen Stuart, while there were elements of “Gangs of New York” and the “Rome” series seen on HBO. The show itself seemed to tell the story of Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel, linking the beauty to the movie business and to the Eternal City itself. The designer’s life and some interesting details from her days in Italy were presented, from strolls to friendships to works in progress; the show included pieces that we would love, including an acrylic shoulder bag shaped like a vintage movie camera, mules with a snake entwined around a pearl on the heel, and lots of lingerie detailing with lace and fingerless gloves so aptly dubbed by Lagerfeld as arm stockings.
Ladies walked onto stage wearing tweed jackets with caped shoulders, a look that is both Paris and Rome combined. There was a slight Italian accent to the long tweed vest and pants combo, something akin to palazzo pajamas, while things were kept light and young and very flirtatious, showing a Coco that everyone can love.
The Chanel pre-fall collection in Rome finished off with lace dresses and purple ostrich feather additions, delicate negligee looks and sophisticated designs that were all French couture. Gamines in schoolgirl tweed appeared within the line-up, along with bourgeois looks complete with white collars and cuffs. There is knitwear to be found, along with pleated skirts, geometric crewnecks and jeweled capelets.
The Chanel Metiers d’Art collection was introduced by Lagerfeld in 2002, made to show off the couture Chanel creates, igniting the pre-collection frenzy and very much becoming the brand’s most celebrated of lines. Paris meets Rome and vice versa here and we cannot help but fall in love over and over again. Somehow, the shows Lagerfeld puts on have some sort of prophetic effect, this one reminding us of the terror attacks and the spring show in Paris done during the Fashion Weeks in October with the airport setting unwittingly alluding to the Air France strike that would take place where the clothing would be ripped off the airline’s chief executive officer. Pretty cool in our books!
Photos courtesy of Chanel