CHANEL’Virginie Viard has opted for opulence this season – drawing inspiration from her predecessor and ultimate aesthete, Karl Lagerfeld. While the Maison’s SS20 Haute Couture collection took us on a bucolic journey to the romantically overgrown cloisters of Gabrielle Chanel’s childhood convent, this season’s Haute Couture collection is all about gothic glamour, accentuated by shimmering jewels from Chanel’s High Jewellery collections.

“I was thinking about a punk princess coming out of ‘Le Palace’ at dawn,” reveals Viard. “This collection is more inspired by Karl Lagerfeld than Gabrielle Chanel. Karl would go to ‘Le Palace’, he would accompany these very sophisticated and very dressed up women, who were very eccentric too.”

In a short film by Mikael Jansson, couture clients could admire the sophisticated 30-piece collection from afar. It features everything from embellished mini-dresses with cinched waists and corolla skirts to extravagant gowns, the latter of which would definitely have Marie Antoinette’s seal of approval with its Grand Siècle allure.

The precious house tweeds, on the other hand, come in flashes of magenta pink, which illuminate the predominantly black and anthracite grey colour palette. Embellished with sequins, strass, stones, and beads, even the tweeds exude a sense of ultra-rock romanticism. “For me, Haute Couture is romantic by its very essence. There is so much love in each one of these silhouettes,” commented Viard.

Virginie Viard has truly outdone herself with Chanel’s AW20 Haute Couture collection, moving in the complete opposite direction to the last with a gothic yet romantic 30-look line-up, carefully bound together by a silver-streaked thread.

by Rhiannon Jenkins

ALL IMAGES BY MIKAEL JANSSON

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