15 July 2014

Chanel Haute Couture Autumn/Winter 2014-2015

Baroque is back... not that it ever really left in my eyes but Karl Lagerfeld's A/W 14 collection was inspired by the Marie Antoinette era with punk elements running through. This, of course modified the pieces, "It's as if Baroque and Le Corbusier had met" boasts Karl on the collection. The "Chanel Shopping Centre" has closed down at The Grand Palais and transformed into a simplistic white runway with enormous fireplaces at each end and a classic old mirror; which was the perfect backdrop for the collection.

Karl has always stayed true to Gabrielle Chanel's legacy while making the necessary adjustments to keep the collection modern and ensure it appeals to the ever-growing target market, and this collection was no exception. "I was fascinated by the co-existence of the essential works by Le Corbustier opposed to the eccentricity and richness of the 18th century buildings" he said, describing the inspiration behind the collection and confirming that the modernity here arises from the juxtaposing themes running throughout. Talking points from the show include Kendall Jenner (Kim K's little sister) making her haute couture debut, "foot thongs"; Karl's interpretation of strappy sandals, and pregnant model Ashleigh Good joining Karl in the final walk in a beautiful white gown finished with gold buttons and embellishment.

This is my favourite Chanel collection since the S/S 13 collection, I've since had to turn to Dolce and Gabbana for my baroque fix since Chanel have recently been more sequined trainers than embellished dresses. I love the luxe allure and the richness which oozes out of such collections as well as the shapes and fabrics which make such pieces what they are. Materials such as velvet, leather, feathers, tweed (obviously), pearls (also obvious), cashmere and silicon coated lace were used for the garments. Created by leading ateliers, intricate emboridery and detailed embellishments give a depth of detail that projects the collection onto another level completely. 

Padded shoulders in the jackets were complimented by accentuated waistlines which gave a silhouette that mimicked that of Dior's "new look" more than it did Gabrielle Chanel's relaxed look but it works. It all sounds a bit too baroque at the minute but I assure you the modernity was there. Hair styled by Sam McKnight was like a vision from the 80's, quiffs teased into Himalayan peaks with hats and visors attached to the back of the head, often backwards, to allow the prominent hairstyle to still be visible.

Images have also been released yesterday from the advertising campaign for the A/W 14 collection, featuring Karl's darling Cara Delevingne (is there a campaign she i'snt in this season?!) She took to instagram to thank Karl and share the pictures with her 5.8 million followers. She's a million dollar baby in the boxing ring with pearls dripping off her wrist and dreadlock-style tweed strands emerging from her high pony-tail. This images are captured of course, by Karl himself, and are as contrasting as everything else he does: the glam of the girls against the gruel of the gritty boxing gym. Certainly effective despite the fact that I was hoping for another baroque themed extravaganza of a campaign, complete with Parisian palaces, glittering antiques, jewels, century-old furniture and gold, gold, gold... there's always next season.