Francine Ballard's Rantings of the Accessory-Obsessed.
The Artist Awards Dinner at the Tribeca Film festival the other night was filled with lovely ladies such as these four, all clad in Chanel.
Models Lily (Donaldson) and Poppy (Delevingne) went for black and white looks equal parts elegant and sexy.
Alexa and Camilla Belle opted for all black and all-over floral, respectively. Also how much do I love the floral background step/repeat!!
Of course any and all Chanel is great, but I prefer Lily’s look the best. What do you guys think? -RS (All images courtesy Chanel)
Daphne Guinness by Markus+Indrani for Tatler Hong Kong.
In Chanel Haute Couture. Talk about drama! -RS (Image via fashiongonerogue)
No one does pre-Oscars like CHANEL. Last night at Madeo in Beverly Hills pretty young things turned out in full force (and head to toe in their favorite designer) to fête fashion and film with Charles Finch.
[Photos: Lily Collins, Ginnifer Goodwin, Rose Byrne, Rachel Bilson and Diane Kruger at the CHANEL and Charles Finch Pre-Oscar Dinner, courtesy CHANEL via Billy Farrell]
If you’ve ever wondered what a day is like at one of America’s biggest fashion trade shows- look no further. At WWDMAGIC last week thousands of exhibitors set up camp to sell their designs for fall 2012. But of the many attractions and distractions one of our favorite exhibitors was not selling, but showing her collection of amazing vintage couture pieces, and signing her newest book, Dreaming of Chanel ($50, Amazon).
We had the good fortune to chat with Charlotte Smith, the author, about her experience at the show and other Chanel related topics:
DS: The GP has a clear fascination with the brand (CHANEL) but how was your book received by the industry insiders walking the floor or exhibiting?
CS: I have been overwhelmed by interest from buyers, exhibitors and designers at the event. I think the fact that this collection is all about preserving fashion history and telling a bit about social history fascinates people.
DS: What pieces were physically there?
CS: I brought eight vintage black dresses and eight vintage red dresses, plus the gorgeous Chanel tweed suit featured on the cover of the book. Designers included in the display are: Dior, Chanel, Ceil Chapman, Geoffrey Been, Zandra Rhodes, Courreges, Balenciaga for the LBDs ranging in date from 1920 - 1980. For the LRDs there was Betsey Johnson (1980), Oleg Cassini, Adolfo, Gianfranco Ferre, Raoul Aranga and Australian designer - Prue Acton. Dates range from 1930 - 1990. My Chanel suit is displayed on its own in a glass case and dates 1960.
DS: Do you feel like you have come to know Coco vicariously through writing this book (and her designs)?
CS: I think a combination of all the Chanel books I have read about her philosophy of life and fashion, and the enviable position I have to be able to look at real vintage Chanel garments in my collection has allowed me to feel I know her a tiny bit better. Chanel was a complicated and private woman. I don’t think her clothes reveal that - she was much to professional and clever to let her private life interfere with her fashion creativity. But, by handling (and wearing!) some of my Chanel pieces I admire her tenacity and drive to create masterpieces using superb quality materials at all times. DS: How do you think Karl’s designs/design philosophy compare?
CS: I don’t think it’s fair to compare the original creator of a fashion house to its current designer. She had a dream, a mission and goals that were created by her own personal joys and disappointments (that were unique to her). Karl has tastefully and cleverly evolved the ‘Chanel look,’ thereby making the line the mega internationally recognized and desired brand that it is today. DS: Any ideas about who might make a good successor for the line?
CS: I think it might be time for a woman to take over the helm. Even though Chanel could be quite boyish in her look, fitting with the Le Garçonne look she helped to establish in the 1920s, I sometimes feel some of the Chanel collections seen on the runway are mannish and have lost the subtle feminine appeal that she managed so easily. What about Donna Karan?! She enjoys tailored, simple and elegant silhouettes. She also loves using expensive, quality fabrics. DS: Do you have a favorite designer?
CS: I love Dior. I just bought a gorgeous cocktail dress in LA. It is pure, indulgent glamour. For vintage, I adore Valentino.
DS: What is the most interesting place that the collection has brought you?
CS: Las Vagas has to be up there! Just goes to show how fashion connects us all around the world.
Alright, let’s wrap this up with a bang.
Chanel Haute Couture Spring 2012 dresses all in shades of silvery gunmetal, 154 hues of blue (and some black here and there) look perfect for the red-carpet season ahead of us. I can just see some of the younger starlets wearing the tiered silvery dresses, and then a grand dame or two in the wonderful organza gowns with striking necklines.
I love that the drop-waist and the hands-in-pockets continued into the evening wear that closed the show. It was also good to see some nice shapes and not too much reliance on beading and embellishment- there was just a touch, just so, and just right.
-RS (Images courtesy Chanel)
One of my favorite shapes from the Chanel couture show was this super long and lean silhouette shown on coat-dresses and little clipped jackets and ankle-length skirts. Slim, willowy, very elegant… very Chanel. And again, stuff your little hands in those pockets girls!
For the Chanel spring couture, Karl Lagerfeld showed a collection of dresses, separates and gowns in precisely 154 shades of blue. It was all about air- the blue sky, the billowing volume etc etc etc. The show opened with some very classic Chanel silhouettes updated with a hip-inset pocket situation that played out through the entire collection. The exaggerated stand-up collars looked retro but still very chic, while blues from powder to marine in the usual tweeds were mixed back with black and white.
-RS (Images courtesy: Chanel)
For Pre-Fall 2012 Karl Lagerfeld was on a passage to India. And since this is Chanel, we’re not talking ashrams or yoga retreats or hippies on the beach at Goa. Rather, he went full force for the over-the-top bejeweling and embellishment of the Maharajas. The color palette was rather sedate considering the point of reference, but he managed to include a few shots of bright pink and periwinkle against all the white, cream, gold, navy and burgundy.
The most successful and interesting looks were those were the “Indian” styling was hinted at but presented in a fresh way. For example, narrow trousers similar to the traditional selwar were paired with airy, feminine frocks in shimmering gold silk and came off looking fresh, just a touch “ethnic” but not costumey. Lagerfeld managed to pull this off in the draped crotch split skirts he showed with neat little tops, and with some of the looks in the latter half of the show.
-RS (Images courtesy CHANEL)
Lakshmi Menon by Mattias Vriens-McGrath for Elle UK December 2011, gettin’ sporty.
Chanel moto gloves- luxe stocking stuffer.
Well, here is the good news. There is quite a lot to love in Chanel Spring 2012. However, most of my favorite looks had nothing to do with the “Under the Sea” theme that Lagerfeld had mentioned. I loooooved the cream colored separates with the black square outline placed askew on the pieces. The seafoam green jacket with black accents was a super cool shape that reminded me a bit of Edwardian mens shirting somehow. Classic blush colored jackets with big gold buttons were good stand-bys, and some of the ruffly dresses I thought very spirited. Stick around for parts two and three though… -RS
Mixed in with the pale blush, seafoam green, nude, and cream was a bit of black and white (always at Chanel) as well as some bright prints in brilliant blues and pinks. Though I couldnt see how the prints were at all sea-themed- they looked more floral to me- they were rendered beautifully in delicate tiers of chiffon. -RS