Karl Lagerfeld’s real gift is synthesis. More than any other designer, he’s able to Osterize the references that are always churning around in his brain into a digestible collection, whether it be cruise’s Dubai romp or fall’s chic errand run. On paper, they don’t compute, but luckily, his medium is fabric. For Chanel’s fall couture collection, which showed in Paris today, Lagerfeld pulled together everything from the sequined ball caps often seen on Vegas tourists to a beribboned and chain-link version of the usually reviled footwear that are flip-flops, blending them with couture embroidery and the house’s signature tweed. (Even the casting was eclectic: Now-ubiquitous Kardashian spawn Kendall Jenner made an appearance — and a pregnant Ashleigh Good closed the show in one hell of a shotgun wedding gown.) “Le Corbusier goes to Versailles” was Lagerfeld’s stated theme, evident in the pieces’ rococo textures set against a stark, modern backdrop. With the right punk spirit (and a spiked hairdo), these clothes could be worn by Cara Delevingne, or they could be toned down by a couture client who lunches. The highlights were best experienced up close, whether that meant the latticed rosettes criss-crossing a blue gown or statement-making fur sleeves. As Lagerfeld proved today, it’s all in the details.
Photo: Alessandro Lucioni/Imaxtree