The fake snow was crispy white, as if macaroons had been crushed over the vast floor of the Grand Palais.https://www.instagram.com/p/BuoA6VUBvCw/?utm_source=ig_embedA line of classic Swiss chalets rose into that intense blue sky you find only in the mountains. And then, finally, Karl Lagerfeld’s 36 years at Chanel, from 1983, were laid to rest, to a soundtrack of David Bowie singing ‘Heroes’ as the entire audience rose to its feet.https://www.instagram.com/p/Bun-ydhBUck/?utm_source=ig_embedBut the show had started in a very different spirit: a minute’s silence to remember the designer who left this world just two weeks ago. And a recording of Karl’s own voice saying that he had never forgotten England’s Queen Mother saying of his Chanel show: “It’s like walking in a painting.”https://www.instagram.com/p/BuoNaXNBjIW/?utm_source=ig_embedA tinkle of cowbells then filled in the silence. The sweet serenity was soon overtaken by a show of snowy fun that had the audience applaud a collection of Parisian tailoring, laced with boldly checked black-and-white coats and Tyrolean patterns on short, cute dresses.
The show was full of other charming surprises, as in Penelope Cruz holding a white rose and wearing a dress with the skirt shaped like a snowball. While Naomi Campbell, Claudia Schiffer and other famous models from past to present were there to do justice to Karl’s heritage and to accept that the show must go on.
Karl left this world at age 85, passing the flame to Virginie Viard, from inside the house of Chanel. She took a brief bow, in tears, saying backstage that she could not yet speak as Karl’s successor, yet she has definitely been chosen by the Wertheimer brothers who own Chanel.