It was a front-row-only show yesterday for the Chanel Fall‑Winter 2016/17 Ready‑to‑Wear collection show at Paris Fashion Week. The set at the Grand Palais – 3,000 gilded chairs arranged around a 600metre runway – was imagined by Karl Lagerfeld, who told Rebecca Lowthorpe, “it’s vaguely the structure of the old Chanel salon”.
Gabrielle Chanel showed her creations and conducted fittings at the rue Cambon Haute Couture salons that inspired the show space. “It’s a dream of everybody to be front row, but it’s normally not possible,”, Karl said in an interview. “I needed a space like this to make something where everybody can be front row. So that was the idea. You can see the detail, the materials, the embroidery, the cut, the accessories, you can see everything as clear as possible.”
A very pink collection for a winter collection; Chanel pearl baubles were layered over everything from pink tweed suits to hat brims. Hats were worn with most looks, “it’s like a helmet you can wear on a bicycle or a motorcycle”, said Karl.
There was more of the streetwear trend that we’ve seen all over the catwalks; a waterproof khaki shrug, Gigi in a quilted (now known as Chesterfield – the evolution of Chanel quilting – according to Karl) jacket, a leather hoodie on Kendall and puffa coats similar to those seen at Stella McCartney. Frayed hems, denim, and flat riding boots were prevalent and motifs ran throughout the collection from Choupette’s face on lurex skirts, a double peace sign on a belt buckle around a tweed dress, and leather criss-cross lacing on boots, rain coats, bags, jackets and the waistlines of dresses.
Willow Smith (Chanel’s new ambassadress), Kris Jenner, Pharrell Williams and Anna Wintour were all in attendance. Watch Karl Lagerfeld talk about the show and the collection below, or check out the full collection in our gallery above.