By Alex Cooper
Karl Lagerfeld never ceases to amaze. As per usual, Lagerfeld shocked many this past week for Paris Fashion Week with Chanel’s Fall 2014 RTW collection.
The clothes were a combination of classic Chanel and modern-day leisure wear, which closely resemble the fashion house’s Spring 2014 collection.
However, what truly stole the show weren’t the designer dreads, but instead the runway modeled after a supermarket.
Dubbed as the Chanel Shopping Center, this mock-up grocery store was identical to a super-store filled with the freshest produce, dry-foods, and home goods. Even better, it was all Chanel themed, right down to the nutritional facts.
The notorious double-C emblem was featured on every product from produce, detergent, and doormats, to cheese, wine, and even chainsaws. Along with that, some models carried shopping baskets made from the infamous Chanel chains.
According to Vogue, Karl noted that the show was a tribute to Pop Art and Andy Warhol’s appropriation of mass–production and –consumption.
Truthfully, I can’t help but find the irony in this mass-consumption themed runway, especially when it comes from the ever-changing, and ever-producing, world of fashion.
But, maybe that was Karl’s theme all along; a show that understood where fashion lies today, which is an industry that relies on mass-consumption, but also one that tried to show what fashion could be with the right perspective. And with the right perspective, thanks to the vision of Karl Lagerfeld, we were reminded that fashion is art, a force of beauty that reflects the lives we lead.
While the supermarket theme embodied these artistic ideals, the clothes were truly one of a kind.
Supermodel Cara Delevingne opened for the show in torn, pink sweatpants, matching cropped sweatshirt, an oversized tweed coat and sneakers.
All of the ensembles shown followed a theme of laid-back sophistication. And by laid-back sophistication, I mean all models rocked Chanel’s classic tweed, chains, and layered pearl necklaces, but this time were accompanied by comfortable two-pieces and replaced stilettos with running-shoes.
Delevingne closed the show by walking hand in hand through the supermarket aisles with Lagerfeld himself.
Karl was sure to mix all of Chanel’s infamous elements into each ensemble; where there were tweed skirts and cropped sweaters, he met them with metallic leggings, sneakers laced up to the knee, and oversized pearls the size of an orange.
Karl embodied the modern-day housewife at the supermarket: a woman who effortlessly slips on her sneakers and overcoat to pick up some milk and bread at her nearest grocer.
While many of us cannot throw on our favorite Chanel tweed oversized coats before we step into Kroger, we can all go to the supermarket. It almost makes you think, what does this show say about the Chanel brand as a whole? That it’s more accessible than one might assume for a high-brow French couture fashion house? Or does it reinforce the brutally honest fact that it’s not as retainable as, say, your average carton of eggs?
Whatever your answer is, you have to admit, Karl has incomparable artistic vision, and for that, we salute him.