Karl Lagerfeld has been at the helm of Chanel since 1982, when he was first appointed by its chairman Alain Wertheimer, and given creative reign of a label most considered dead at the time.
Not only did he rise to the occasion and remould this label into one of the most powerful fashion brands in the world but in doing so proved himself to be a master of the times.
Wherever the trendiest girls went their Chanel bags went with them, from Naomi Campbell and Christy Turlington in the Nineties to Kristen Stewart and Lilly Rose Depp in 2016. Chanel is about the now, and Karl Lagerfeld doesn’t dawdle in the past.
For the s/s17 show he applied his winning mantra to a collection that appeared to be inspired by the future – albeit one with a classic Twenties romanticism. The collection began with models that wore masks loosely inspired by the storm troopers from Star Wars. Lagerfeld then proceeded into a collection of pieces that brought to mind everything from switchboards to electronic control panels.
Perceivable points of inspiration are not in Lagerfeld’s style. Instead, his approach to futurism came in the form of subtle detailing like the scarlet piping on a hand braided tweed jacket that deftly combined various shades to appear like the fine lines on the inside of a microchip. Or perhaps the glinting lines that ran haphazardly across a svelte black evening jacket, which upon closer observation looks like the inside of your phone.
These distinctly clever details were applied across a range of easy-to-wear pieces, from cocktail dresses to suits and overcoats, which despite their painstaking handwork appeared weightless.
Perhaps Lagerfeld himself was making a commentary on the fast paced advancements of modern technology or simply toying with the notion of Chanel-bots in space. Either way, the future of Chanel continues to remain in the most capable of hands.