French fashion label Chanel took to a darkened runway for creative director Virginie Viard’s fall-winter collection on Tuesday, showing a glamorous line-up infused with references to a key brand symbol, the camellia flower.
The entire set was built around towering, white camellia sculptures that faced the audience, seated in steep risers ringing the space, a sprawling exhibition hall south of the Eiffel Tower.
Projected onto the giant camellias were images of Nana Komatsu, styled to resemble the 1960s film character Polly Maggoo, with thick eyeliner and a sleek hairstyle that curled up at the bottom.
The label's ubiquitous camellia appeared throughout the show, worked into the patterns of sweeping overcoats and dresses, rendered as stark white three-dimensional embellishments on all-black ensembles, and cropping up as a patch of black flowers adorning the collar of a slick black jacket.
Most looks were black and white, paraded by models striding on shiny black platform boots, often with patterned white tights. Bermuda shorts and matching jackets, loose-legged jumpsuits and tweed ensembles were accessorized with the label’s signature jewelry – chained belts, earrings and swinging necklaces that sparkled down the runway.
For the finale, the massive camellia sculptures suddenly glowed red, and slowly shifted between red and a bright pink as models rounded the room.
The catwalk presentation was held on the final day of Paris Fashion Week, which drew crowds of celebrities to the French capital, and featured big-name labels including Hermes, Valentino, LVMH-owned (LVMH.PA) Dior and Louis Vuitton, Kering-owned (PRTP.PA) labels Saint Laurent and Balenciaga.