Titled Paris – 31 Rue Cambon, Virginie Viard’s Métiers d’art Collection was conspicuously designed as a tribute to Gabrielle Chanel’s first store in Paris, featuring the emblematic elements of Coco’s apartment too. The staircase, the mirrors, the study, everything was perfectly set inside the Grand Palais, to remind us how it all started and to keep the legacy of an iconic house intact.
CHANEL’s admiration and deep appreciation toward the luxury suppliers of the fashion industry has always been known and constitutes a key factor in all of the House’s collections. It’s the embroiderers, the feather and artificial flower makers, the milliners and the custom shoemakers that the Métiers d’art Collections are a tribute to, after all. This year, the show was an amalgam of classic CHANEL aesthetic as it was formed by Coco and then evolved by Karl, and the modern attitude Virginie Viard is proudly infusing into the brand.
Pepper and salt tweed suits, feathery blazers, evening dresses with lace, ombré chiffon prints, cardigan knits, jogging pants, chains, statement belts, rich colors and many more items plethorically graced the catwalk, conveying one multidimensional message: wearability. What Virginie Viard focuses on more than anything is the “ability” of the clothes to be both upscale and casual, both impressively luxurious and easy to wear in your everyday life. When asked, Virginie described the new collection as “the things we like, a mix of Karl and Chanel”. Well, it looks like it is way more than that. A whole new chapter, actually.
One of the most crucial and talked about issues of fashion nowadays is sustainability. Amidst a global climate crisis and given the financial instability most countries are faced with, it comes as no surprise that the fashion industry plays an important role in the process of creating a new, wiser culture that could lead to an ecologically and economically viable future.
With Taylor Swift wearing a vintage CHANEL tweed jacket from the Métiers d’art 2005/2006 Collection for the cover of the January 2020 issue of British Vogue, it becomes clear that as the years go by, fine taste and high quality craftsmanship have the potential to master time and produce items able to last. We are now called to choose wisely between fast, abundant fashion and carefully selected, timeless pieces like Taylor’s navy and red trimmed CHANEL jacket that possess the “power” to accompany as for as long as we live.
As proven by this cover, archive clothes are not old clothes. Accessorized with a CHANEL autumn/winter 2018 blouse and vintage CHANEL earrings, Taylor’s total outfit emits a powerful vibe of contemporary allure that has nothing to do with temporary trends. At the end of the day, it is all about being thoughtful and creative – not compulsively consuming. As Gabrielle Chanel once said, “fashion passes, style remains”. Quality will always be preferable to quantity.