Chanel Fall Winter 2012 Collection

Tuesday March 6, 2012 – Grand Palais

It’s like a dream, this is amazing” said Mouna Ayoub looking at the Chanel set in the Grand Palais. She is one of the few women that can have everything, but even she was amazed. In many ways, we all owe a small debt of gratitude to Ms. Ayoub, whose vast wealth is only matched by her penchant for Haute Couture. Because of clients like her, fashion houses can afford to treat the world to a collection that exemplifies the pinnacle of fine craftsmanship and unimaginable decadence.

Chanel is truly a multifaceted gem. Karl, no less faceted than the house of Coco, brilliantly explores every aspect of the brand by delivering a purely decadent runway show. The decor was composed of giant ores, smoky quartz and amethyst crystals, emerging from a bed of white gravel, and paired perfectly with a pulsating, energetic soundtrack remixed by Michel Gaubert.

For the past few seasons, Chanel has to toyed with idea of layering pieces, leaving the skin rarely exposed. This season was no exception. Womenswear saw softened drawstring tweed fabric on parkas. Things got even more interesting with dry tweed jackets and dress numbers which were worn with skinny pants, buttoned at the ankle; a clean way to refresh the current Chanel 2012-2013 winter trend of ‘super-layering’. Some of the looks offered afraser take on couture accessorisation, with loose coats in black tweed knotted with martingale belts, worn at the hip, fringed with red crystals at the edges; ditto on the black and white looks.

A toddler sporting the velour ‘Boy’ mini-bag rendered an otherwise fetish accessory into an adorable children’s piece. The jewelry looked raw and edgy with metal joints appearing to have been burned by a welder’s torch, which was then tempered by a gorgeous array of raw studded crystals.

Of course, the inspirations were of such variety that it felt as if there was a little something for everyone. And it appears as if this multi-pluralistic approach to fashion is paying off. “[They’re] buying as many accessories as they are buying clothes” says Bruno Pavlovsky, the house’s president of fashion activities. Starting today, the brand will provide clients with more choice, with the launch of its second Avenue Montaigne store. Already open, the 450 square meter boutique located at building No. 42 faces No. 51, where Chanel invested in a 600 square meter property that spans two floors. “On the first floor, eight fitting rooms can easily accommodate clients. At No. 42, the space was tight. Not enough room to accommodate everyone, “says Pavlovsky,, who was ready to fly to Tokyo to accompany the Haute Couture collection.

Presented in January, the same collection will bow for a second time in the ‘land of the rising sun’. The trip will be an opportunity to relaunch the aviation inspired pieces to even greater fanfare, and would be a first for Chanel. The trip will be capped with a series of photographs, shot by the Kaiser himself, which will go on display and focus on the jacket; the cornerstone of the Chanel empire dating as far back as the 1920’s.


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