Couture week is not as it seems this time around. We’ve seen the fashion calendars’ most awe-inspiring event reduced to a digitised version its former self, but that doesn’t mean the creativity has been any less pervasive. We’ve witnessed doll-sized couture at Dior, a single model (Joan Smalls) in frothy pink tulle at Giambattista Valli and divine sketches at Schiaparelli. A couture week outside the sartorial box, but a couture week nonetheless.
At Chanel Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2020/21, Creative Director Virginie Viard built a show inspired by a 19th century heroine: a sophisticating, rebellious, eccentric woman swathed in intricate embroidery, shimmering metallics and the house signature tweed. The collection was a slow drip feed of looks revealed online, plus a short film directed by Mikael Jansson.
The beauty was, as always, superb. Chanel Global Creative Make up and Colour Designer Lucia Pica painted model’s Adut Akech and Rianne Van Rompaey with punk-ish berry lips, thick sooty liner with a hyper-extended flick and bright, punchy blush in shades of shocking pink. Adut also wore an incredibly rich plummy metallic eye – rimmed with silver pencil atop extremely glossy cheekbones.
Hair was big a melange of Adut’s divine short textured crop, soft airy waves and a statement mohawk intertwined with blue feathers. In some instances it spilled out onto the face, creating a part-beauty-part-headpiece moment.
It was the very best of punk softened with a Chanel edge – bold, but still beautiful, clean and considered. She was an 80s French rockstar leaving Le Palace at dawn. Pica posted a few of the hero looks on her Instagram, all of which you’ll find in the gallery below.