For his latest Chanel collection, Karl Lagerfeld brought Greece—and its most famous architecture—to Paris, building a nearly life-size replica of the Temple of Poseiden in his preferred venue, the Grand Palais. The movie-set backdrop of ancient seaside ruins was topped off with banks of bright lights, giving the illusion of fleeting Mediterranean sun, a stark contrast to the grey clouds outside the show. When explaining why he chose a Grecian theme in the show’s notes, though, Lagerfeld insisted, “It has nothing to do with a country. Reality is of no interest to me. I use what I like. My Greece is an idea.”
Models, or Lagerfeld’s 21st-century goddesses, paraded through the Grecian ruins in colorful, high-heeled gladiator sandals and mineral-toned tunics and knits. In addition to the earthy garments, the collection saw a heavy use of gold jewellery and coinage—perhaps meant to mimic the Midas touch narrative—and did not hold back on the embellishment. From jewelled hair clips to sunglasses trimmed with golden laurel leaf, the Chanel cruise line was seemingly all about its accessories.
In a time of Instagram and instant gratification, Lagerfeld seemed to suggest that younger, technology-obsessed generations proceed with caution. The designer said, “I’m suggesting going back to move forward. To create the future, you have to pay attention to the past.” Only time will tell if the rest of the fashion industry follows suit.
Visual editor OLGA SOROKINA