Paris — the City of Light, lovelocks and the Seine River— was the backdrop Tuesday in Chanel’s sublime couture collection that showed designer Karl Lagerfeld is still at the top of his game at 84.

Penelope Cruz, Pharrell Williams and Lily Allen applauded after the cinematic runway display in which the French fashion house painstaking recreated a Parisian cityscape — all inside the nave of the Grand Palais.

No detail was spared: from the padlocks on the famed Pont des Arts bridge to the surrounding riverside booksellers (with Chanel-themed literature), to thick city stones and the majestic domed French Academy.

But this fall-winter season, couture was the true star of the show. Here are some highlights from Tuesday’s collections.


Mirroring the nostalgic Parisian decor, Chanel’s 67 accomplished looks came in the colors of the city.

Light gray evoked zinc rooftops, almond green for historic building roofs, anthracite for roads and gold and silver — so said the program — for “reflections of the moon in the rippling Seine.”

Pinks and mauves reflected sunrise; black and deep navy, the night. White and beige captured the French capital’s annoyingly changeable weather.

The myriad interlocking crystal embroideries, meanwhile, were said to mirror cobblestones and netted tulle, embroidered with gold, evoked lovers’ padlocks on the Pont des Arts (that were famously banned by Paris authorities).

These poetical explanations were nice but unnecessary for a collection that didn’t need any gimmicks to impress. Lagerfeld raised the bar this season — and it was the inspired sleeve silhouette that did it.

Sleeves flapped and unfurled in a unique bell shape achieved thanks to an open zipper up the arm. It possessed a fresh sporty-meets-regal air.

The unfurling shape moved down the body into long split skirts with open panels at the sides, and another skirt underneath.

Folded cuff boots furthered this unfurling dynamic, as the cuff opened out of the shoe stylishly — in black, white, gray or embroidered sequins.


A 100% Parisian set

Karl Lagerfeld recreated the banks of the Seine inside the Grand Palais to create an utterly Parisian atmosphere. Designed like a stroll through the capital, guests could themselves stroll along the “streets” and their bookstalls, which were complete with old fashion magazines and publications that paid homage to Coco Chanel, as well as replicas from her personal library.

Shoulder and leg accents

Shoulders were the focal point of many looks, and were either given dramatic volume or covered in sequins, emphasized by a bustier or will balloon sleeves. split pieces were an essential part of this haute couture collection, revealing models’ legs to upgrade the house’s signature tweed. Zipped pieces also added a touch of skin-revealing rock’n’roll.

Glitter galore

Chanel once again exhibited their creative flair with a series of pure luxury pieces, many of which were decorated with sequins. There was all-over glitter pieces, as well as party-girl looks with transparent black tulle. Glitteringly extravagant creations, perfect for special occasions.

The rock’n’roll beauty look

Rockabilly-style hair reigned supreme for a 1950s twist. For makeup, models had fresh, dewy skin and with golden bronze smoky eyes for an added rock touch.