The Chanel Challenge
Funny enough, just when I actually liked a Chanel collection Suzy Menkes did not.
The couture show I watched online this past week touched me for several reasons. Number one - the simple silhouette would NOT appeal to Russian oligarch´s wives, spoiled rich kids or Arab princesses who make most of the clients of Chanel couture in my imagination; okay, there is also Anna Wintour and most of the Grimaldis, all personal friends with Karl Lagerfeld but I never knew anybody with taste who actually PAYED for clothes.
Accessories that´s another story.
The success of the timeless bags and tongue-in-cheak references (Birkenstocks! Biker-Boots! Sneakers!!) to street style - I get it! And I always thought that smart Karl Lagerfeld planned just that: Give them a show, be it couture or Métiers d'Art or Prêt-à-porter, make it the biggest event of every fashion week - and then your accessories will fly off the shelves like highstreet-sweatshirts.
The collection Virginie Viard presented last Tuesday was nothing like it. The presentation was quiet and classy, the clothes actually wearable, the models wore natural make-up and came in seizes up to a healthy 12.
The legendary fashion critic Suzie Menkes never really wrote inexorably about anybody in order to not shy advertising clients too far away from her motherships "International Herald Trubine" or "Vogue".
Now, completely on her own she killed the collection calling it "just dull".
We will see. Maybe Chanel will start to actually sell clothes in the future: to women who love to look good - not "edgy" - at any age or size. And also within budgets allowing some of us acutally afford them.
Wouldn´t that be exciting?