It was snowing under the roof of the Grand Palais, where the Chanel Fall/Winter 2019 show was hosted and also where fashion was mourning its hero – Karl Lagerfeld.
Passing on February 19th, Karl Lagerfeld left Chanel with an ultimate collection and an ultimate decor – a mountain village, perhaps in the Tyrol, where the chalets disappeared under thick layers of powder. Bells were chiming across the snow-covered set... it was 11 AM when the first silhouettes arise from the cottage "Gardenia".
Mariacarla Boscono, Catherine McNeil, Mica Arganaraz, Cara Delevingne... The ambassadors of the house and muses of Karl all gathered in this farewell tribute. The first wore a very long coat tweed lined with faux fur. The look was cinematic – a great prince's style set in a 1970s alpine thriller.
Swipe gallery below for the full collection:
Time was suspended as the models walked the finale with tears melting the snow-capped village. After the minute of silence, the Grand Palace listens religiously to the voice of his "Kaiser".
It was then necessary for fashion to resume its rights. "The beat goes on", as the designer had sketched on a card left to each guest.
Life continues, as everyone hears seeing Cara Delevingne, the accomplice and the muse, lead the dance on a soundtrack by Michel Gaubert. There were 71 silhouettes, all made for winter sports/holidays and, most importantly, for real life.
Mosaic skirts and cashmere, wide leather trousers and tutti frutti jackets, skater dresses and more made appearances on the runway but what caught us was when Kris Grikaite punctuated the show with a "cable car" minaudière and when actress Penelope Cruz came out holding a single white rose.
Fairy in its sobriety, the runway show ends with an emotional greeting from Virginia Viard (Karl Lagerfeld's right-hand man who succeeds him) ... and a choral final pulsed by David Bowie's "Heroes".
That was one of the favourite songs of the designer, which was also used a few days earlier at the closing of the Fendi show. A title, vibrant with energy and genius, to which Karl Lagerfeld will now be - and forever - associated.
After all, heroes are eternal.
[Translated by L'Officiel USA]
Swipe gallery below to see the details of the runway: