A GIGANTIC hay barn in the centre of the Grand Palais, with Chanel written across it in huge wooden letters, was the setting for Karl Lagerfeld’s latest incarnation for the French fashion house this morning.
There were rumours that Lily Allen was going to be performing live at the show – no sign of her yet, but as we made our way through the straw-strewn hall we saw plenty of other starry action: Claudia Schiffer and Prince were in the front row, just a few seats from Natalia Vodianova who had a gorgeous little blonde girl on her lap, and Chanel regular Virginie Ledoyen.
Chanel’s version of a roll in the hay was a pretty stylish affair – much softer than last season, the clothes comprised pale pink, black and white silk ribbons that had been woven into tweed jackets with ragged edges, pale tan patchwork suede skirts and fluffy woven chiffon jackets that featured a touch of sparkle at the edge – and carried random strands of straw with them.
It wasn’t sickly sweet though – the tweed mini skirts were slit right up to there on both sides, while jackets were fastened down both side seams with metallic beads. Heeled clogs may well be on the style agenda as a result of this morning, and Chanel continued the trend that began in Milan for bags that claim to be made of raffia (but are in fact the softest, most pliable Nappa).
Lacy hold ups came under short lace dresses that were black overlaid in white or gorgeous neon peach overlaid in cream, while tattooed thighs and the odd pair of super-skinny acid washed jeans (modelled by Karl himself when he took his bow), kept the emphasis on rock stardom as Primal Scream yelled Rocks at us.
Broderie anglaise jackets, that puffed at the shoulder and over the hips, and rusty orange wool suits that featured bronze buttons all down each arm, were classic, desirable Chanel, while springy trapeze miniskirts made flirty numbers of party dresses and the occasional Quaker-style headscarf brought the central theme back to the forefront – though models pretended to use their Blackberries on their way around the barn as if to prove that these clothes were meant for the modern day.
Suddenly the floor started to rise and there was Lily after all, playing live amongst the hay with her band in situ wearing Chanel spring/summer 2010. It was such a fashion moment - to see Natalia bopping in the front row while Prince looked on, absolutely expressionless – that we almost forgot the clothes that continued parading around her.)
They were beautiful, delicate and incredibly chic – pale gold and blue chiffons were appliquéd with spring flowers; taffeta black and white dresses were deliciously pretty and then Lara Stone appeared as the Chanel bride with a chiffon veil and two grooms - all of whom fell upon each other in the hay as Karl walked past to bow.
No matter how serious he is about fashion, he wants us to enjoy ourselves next summer.
A very enjoyable collection with a set designed similar to D&G's 25th Anniversary show. The clothing was beautifully structured, and layered with multiple fabrics, screaming Chanel.The composition of the show was interesting, with reoccurring couples, women with mobile phones, and smiles all over. Beautifully crafted.