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Pharrell Williams and Helen Lasichanh, Ella Prunell, Yara Shahidi and Keri Russell were among CHANEL’s guests at the annual Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute Gala held in New York.
It was by night, under the immense glass nave of the Grand Palais, that CHANEL's guests discovered the ocean liner 'La Pausa', the setting of the Cruise 2018/19 show.
Like an invitation on a journey, the 88 looks presented offered a variation on the faux-classic codes of nautical uniforms (stripes, sailor tops, the double-breasted jacket), cleverly twisted with casual notes. The atmosphere was breezy and brimming with elegance of comfortable simplicity, starting with the show's opening silhouettes in fluid, striped trousers and white sweaters bearing the double C or the name of the ship, 'La Pausa'. Wearing supple little berets, white stockings and Mary Janes or sneakers with straps, models strode confidently down the quay. Luminous whites, blues, pinks and pastels took pride of place in a collection that played up horizontal and vertical stripe motifs as well as graphic prints of waves, portholes and boats. Tweeds, cotton poplins, silk chiffon, crêpe de Chine and georgette, fishnets, crochet, vinyl delicately embellished with feathers and supple or ethereal materials highlighted the lines of silhouettes that were either very short or long. From midriff-revealing crop tops to streamlined Capri trousers; the white tweed mini-dress to the iconic jacket revisited as a blazer worn alone or with a pleated skirt, or a suit with a short jacket and skater skirt, everything seemed made to lift spirits and keep the silhouette light.
Accessories blended CHANEL signatures with nautical motifs, with round sunglasses, fingerless gloves in two-toned striped leather, buoy-shaped minaudières and pearl sautoirs and belts.
By evening, festive chic asserts with brio this collection's main themes of freshness and lightness in pleated evening dresses in crêpe de Chine, a ruffled sheath dress, printed chiffon, long dresses in black and white sequined stripes, draping, a fishnet evening sheath embroidered with a sequined herringbone motif, short blouses with ruffled collars over knife-pleated skirts in printed chiffon.
As an epilogue to the show, guests were invited aboard 'La Pausa' for the after party.
Françoise Claire Prodhon