In the case of the latter, quite literally, while the reign of le Roi Soleil fundamentally shaped both France and Europe, politically, aesthetically, and indeed sartorially. Come to think of it, Gabrielle Chanel was also a revolutionary architect of French style – the main difference being that her work took place on people’s backs rather than above their heads, or on a battlefield.
That’s a hefty preamble to a fashion collection, but Lagerfeld has never been a man to do anything by halves. In the Grand Palais, a vast venue bogarted years ago by Chanel as the venue for their P.T. Barnum-level feats of fashion theatre, Lagerfeld erected a salon that fused those two great Frenchmen.
Rococorbusier? Something along those lines. Translating that to the clothes actually made more sense: strict, modernist silhouettes, embellished to the hilt.
They were more complex than they first appeared. The embroidery, by craft houses such as Maison Lesage, owned and financially supported by the might of Chanel for over a decade – was dazzling, resembling the Verbeckt-carved panelling of Versailles’ boiseries in contrasts of gilt against nimbus white, but the cut was more compelling.
Haute Couture autumn/winter 2015 fashion shows