Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel turned to nature for inspiration this season – not to predictable leafy forests, but to cold, sharp crystals created over millions of years in underground caves. The spiky nature of his inspiration led to a focused and precise collection of layered three-quarter-length coats, dresses and skirts which swung around the knee and ankle-skimming tailored trousers. This strong, futuristic cave woman was adorned with ruched metallic fabrics worn over silver Lurex-shot tweeds in green, black and this season’s violet. Gilded feathers formed capes, ruffs and bodices which merged into angular patterns on otherwise transparent fabrics.
Many of the over-sized shapes seen in New York, London and Paris this season recurred, but Lagerfeld set his designs apart with embellishments and appliqué, from jewel-dipped coat cuffs, hems and heels to pockets and necklines accented with cubist colour-blocking. Even the faces of the models echoed Lagerfeld’s inspiration and the set design of the Grand Palais, with crystal-encrusted eyebrows created by legendary couture embroidery house Lesage.