Karl Lagerfeld was flying sky high with his Spring/Summer 2016 Chanel show. This time the designer decided to turn the cavernous Grand Palais show venue into a sleek and chic airport terminal where everyone, bien sûr, is traveling in first class.
There were a few features that lent themselves to pre-show selfies – the double C logo luggage carts, the helpful Chanel airline staff waiting at baggage drop off to ostensibly check in VIP travelers. But there wasn't a Chanel last minute travel supply store in sight. Which left some disappointed that they wouldn’t be able to get their hands on a Chanel branded neck pillow, some Chanel beauty samples and courtesy toothbrush in an amenity kit, or even some double C compression socks.
Perhaps Lagerfeld had learned his lesson with his famous supermarket show. Go big, yes, but go overboard…that is not how Chanel likes to travel.
Instead, the covetable goodies were consigned to the catwalk. There, models trailed quilted trolley carry-on bags, wore velcro sandals with a line of lights ringing their thick soles. They sported stiff-billed baseball hats or silver driving gloves and finished off their outfits with reflective mirrored shades. However, all of the gray metal headbands, bow hair clips and wide cuffs (not to mention the oodles of pearl and crystal choker necklaces) are going to make passing through the metal detectors at airport security a bit of a nightmare.
The airplane theme didn’t just circle the accessories. Lagerfeld also embedded it into the fabric of his ready-to-wear. For those voyagers who prefer a more casual approach to on-board attire, some cozy knit airplane motif intarsia pants and sweaters or a pair of wide cut denim trousers worn with a roomy bracelet sleeved jacket should do the trick. And a number of graphic red, white, and blue ensembles had easy fluid silhouettes so that they were both boldly eye-catching and comfortable. Even the departure board printed pieces had a playful potency.
But not everyone sees a plane ride as a moment to unwind. Au contraire, by dressing up in some iconic Chanel tweed suits in grid motifs the models made a strong argument for making an effort when setting out on a long haul voyage. In those expertly tailored designs there is no doubt that, if there is an upgrade to be had, those women are going to be the ones getting them.
This was a turbulence-free fashion show. Lagerfeld isn’t going to have an open seat on his Chanel flight next season when this collection finally lands in stores.