Chanel venue productions are always over-the-top fancy, and always too unreal. But for autumn-winter 2016, Karl Lagerfeld decided to make his haute couture show an actual haute couture atelier. The legendary petites mains from Rue Cambon were transported to Grand Palais with all their sewing machines, becoming a living and breating setting for the models.
“Behind the girls in the show, there are 200 more who make what they wear—that’s quite a lot, no?—and I thought we should show them to the public too.” For this season’s couture, Chanel praised the women who are behind all the coveted tweed pantsuits, duchesse satin dresses and floriform embroidery. However, it seems like the heart of the house was exposed to the crowd; the intimacy of couture-making was disturbed for good, being suddenly photographed and tagged for social media. And surely, producing such venue is a desperate move to steal the spotlight.
But let’s not forget about the clothes, or rather wearable pieces of art. Although first looks were very classical and very Coco, the gowns which were emerging from the “atelier” oozed with drama. Black, tulle gown worn by Molly Bair with an exaggerated collar looked spectacular, while Edie Campbell’s closing look, so an embellished, pink coat with feathers on the back, was ethereal. The concept is ambiguous; the dresses are great. Quite average, as for Chanel.