Fashion - July 7, 2020

Chanel F/W 2020-21 Haute Couture Collection: A New Punk Romanticism

Unpublished but no less sensational, Chanel’s Haute Couture F/ W 2020-21 collection is a hymn to who have known how to transform Chanel into a contemporary lifestyle: Karl Lagerfeld. For the first time ever presented in a totally 2.0way, without celebs to applaud it and an ecstatic audience in the front row, today Tuesday 7 July, the French fashion house Chanel presented its first post-COVID-19 collection. “I was thinking about a punk princess coming out of ‘Le Palace’ at dawn,” said Virginie Viard, creative director of the brand, at the presentation of the most anticipated Haute Couture collection of the year.

A taffeta dress, big hair, feathers and lots of jewellery, this is the mood followed by the designer who, she says, is inspired for the first time much more by Karl Lagerfeld than Gabrielle Chanel herself. And in fact, Karl would have gone to “Le Palace” just like that, accompanying these sophisticated contemporary princesses, overdressed to the right point and elegantly eccentric. Unlike the last Haute Couture collection in which the mood was decidedly more bucolic and inspired by Gabrielle’s childhood, the garments of this Fall/Winter 2020-21 have abandoned their childhood to take on the role of opulence, luxury and jewellery gleaming. The jewels are a fundamental component of the collection, to the point that they are precisely those of Chanel high jewellery to be the real protagonists. Virginie Viard declares that she has specifically chosen to go against the current compared to the previous collection, to challenge this time the complexity and refinement in their purest sense.

Once again the great protagonist is the timeless tweed, embroidered by the famous Métiers d’art Lesage and Montex as well as by Lemarié and Goossens and enriched, this time, by sequins, rhinestones, stones and beads that confirm the desire to exaggerate this latest Haute Couture. The typically androgynous suits are made hyper-feminine by diamond-shaped braids adorning the pants, mixing with short dresses with a narrow waist and iconic corolla skirts. Next to them are the timeless maxi dresses with an almost Renaissance charm typical of women who have made the revolution a motto. More than in France, German art seems to have influenced Virginie, which still confirms the desire to feel closer to the master Karl. Flashes of pink illuminate the timeless black and anthracite grey dresses and the painted laces enrich the bolero jackets. Lurex threads give character to tweed as well as to simpler textures such as wool and cotton, while the accessories resume the punk-rock fashion to soften it as only Chanel can do. Romantic and eccentric, the Chanel Haute Couture woman for next winter is a mix of contradictions, it is the set of different faces of the same medal: that of unconditional love in all its forms.

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