Lace tights, strings of pearls and baguettes. Of all the things I could expect to find in Cinecittà, the temple of Roman cinematography where colossal movies like Ben Hur and Cleopatra were shot, the streets of Paris were the very last thing on my mind. But maybe I should have suspected it from the the official hashtag: #ParisinRome. A clear clue of the fact that, this time, Chanel’s Métiers d’Art collection was not going to be inspired by the place the show took place at, as it always been in the past, but it would have instead been the elected city, Rome, to become the theater in which Karl Lagerfeld would have staged Paris. Does Mademoiselle seems the type to be influenced by the places she lived in, borrowing clothes and habits? Well, apparently, during her extraordinary and extremely intense life, Gabrielle Chanel also lived in Rome for a while: in via Giulia to be exact, one of the most beautiful streets of the historic city, where the designer lived her very personal version of the Dolce Vita, hanging out with directors and writers and dressing the actresses that starred in Antonioni’s and Visconti’s movies with her tweed jackets and her little black dresses.
They are in fact the muses who inspired the collection presented at the Teatro N°5 (Fellini favorite’s theater), transformed by Lagefeld into a black and white longtime gone Paris; a romantic tribute to a city that is hurt but proudly gets back on its feet. Wearing a look composed of 3 pieces (tunic, skirt and leggings, all knitted ) but also slip dresses that reveal an unexpected sexy side of the maison, walking fiercely wearing military boots but also bicolor mules that feature a high heel decorated by a snake and a pearl, Chanel’s Parisians are the only ones able to enjoy a Roman Holiday without being captured by the charm of the Vespa, but enchanting Italians, instead, with their boldly chic attitudine.
(READ MORE AFTER THE GALLERY)
A French girl in Rome, as we can read on the first page of The Roman Express, the very special newspaper specifically created and printed by Lagerfeld for this evening, illustrating the inspiration through historic shots of Mademoiselle walking in the city accompanied by images of models wearing the collection, shot by Karl himself. A newspaper to be kept even just as souvenir of the magic moment when we walked through the doors of the Teatro N°5 and we found there little Hudson and Jameson Kroenig (Lagerfeld’s godsons) dressed as newsies (you know, the young boys who sold newspapers in the streets at the beginning of the 1900’s) who delivered it to us with a slick smile before running to hide in the streets of a white and black Paris. A city that appeared to have come out of a silent movie, but that would have later been animated by lights and sounds leaving everyone speechless, while the first models started to enter the scene, and then, by people, smells and voices, when, at the end of the show, the flower shops opened their doors to compose flower bunches to gift to the ladies and the boulangeries began making hot bread and brasseries set the tables for astonished guests who sat down to taste French and Italian cuisine. Champagne and pizza. Is there a chicest match?