How can we not veer into fashion when Chanel’s 2014/15 Cruise Collection is about to be unveiled in Dubai in less than 24 hours? Special contributor and Dubai based fashion design educator Yohann Proux gives a low down on the collections from the past. If there is any red thread through the years, its unapologetic luxury – which in itself suits the Emirate perfectly.
MAY 13, 2009 / VENICE
“Coco on the Lido,” as Lagerfeld called it, the collection was staged at Coco’s favourite summer haunts. Reinstating the long-lost leisurely sensation of a fashion show as an exceptional one-off experience, silent movie era hair and make-up strung along a collection featuring tricorne hats and cloaks, dresses fashioned in plissé knit, shimmery sequins and glass embroidery imitating the play of light on Venice’s water.
MAY 10, 2010 / SAINT-TROPEZ
Nostalgic like a Riviera movie, the ambience was leisurely as models sauntered in bare-feet, with relaxed hair and barely-there face paint, wearing seventies-esque diaphanous caftans, long crocheted dresses, ruffle-lapelled silk jersey trouser suits and patchwork denim skirts. Bronzed tans, visible midriffs complimented witty nods to the past from a designer who famously is known to not give the heed to eras gone by. Surely Coco’s love for the balmy location weakened Karl tough stance on sepia memories.
MAY 08, 2011 / ANTIBES, FRANCE
“Too much may not be enough,” Lagerfeld mused at show’s end. But when you book out arguably one of the most expensive hotels in the world – the Hotel du Cap – for your show, excess is of the essence. Inspired by the likes of Rita Hayworth and Aly Khan, the lean silhouette he opted for was more relaxed, less in-your-face sexy. The opening streams of broom yellow and lilac hinted of the local summer flora as models marched to the beat of Prince.
MAY 13, 2012 / VERSAILLES, FRANCE
“Frivolity is a healthy attitude,” Karl said after the show. “I know people who were saved by frivolity.” His muse for the Cruise Collection this time, was not as lucky. As models stomped the grounds of Versailles, Mary Antoinette’s influence was indelible. Formal eighteenth-century details, like exaggerated hips etc. were re-imagined in casual twenty-first-century materials —chambray, tech denims, even plastics. Frothy lace ruffles and cuffs, even a beauty spot by the way of the double C on the cheek – Mary was alive and well.
MAY 09, 2013 / SINGAPORE
Karl took Chanel on a holiday and his troop celebrated at a disused nutmeg plantation mill in Singapore. Cricket culture played a huge role in the years’ collection as sweaters with shoulder-wide, deep V-necks worn with shirt and tie, accessorised with shinguards and cricket bats made quite the theatrical impact. Chanel’s signature palette of cream and black might have been a nod to the black and white bungalows of colonial Singapore, but decked in a lounge suit – easy wide-legged pants with long belted sweaters – the quintessential Chanel woman made a statement very much of the times.
May 13, 2014 / DUBAI
A nod to one of the biggest luxury markets in the world, Chanel lays anchor by a private island off the coast of Dubai to host its latest Cruise Collection at a rumoured budget of USD 2.5 million. Going by the ivory and gold invitation’s essence of Islamic iconography with an Art-Deco twist, the Dubai edition of the long standing Chanel tradition (Coco debuted the first cruise collection back in the 1920s), is sure to be dripping in luxury.
For more information visit Chanel here.