Karl Lagerfeld's final Chanel show is a snowy alpine wonderland
The Grand Palais in Paris was transformed into a wintery alpine village complete with snow-topped ski chalets for late fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld's final Chanel show.
The winter wonderland scene, named Chalet Gardenia, was imagined by the late Karl Lagerfeld, who passed away on 19 February at the age of 85, and his successor Virginie Viard.
Together the duo designed a snow-buried runway lined with pine trees, lamp posts and 12 Swiss-style chalets with smoking chimneys, creating a "peaceful" mountainous village scene for the alpine ensembles of Chanel's latest Autumn/Winter 2019 ready-to-wear collection.
Chanel-branded skis and poles stuck in the ground completed the alpine look, set against a painted backdrop of a bright blue sky and snowy mountain peaks.
The event began with a minute of silence for the late German couturier, followed by a voice recording of Lagerfeld discussing the art of the fashion show and the creative evolution of the French fashion house.
British model Cara Delevingne opened the show in an oversized houndstooth coat and Chanel's signature black and white checked bouclé.
Models disguised as mountain-dwellers "seized the spirit of romantic dandies" as they walked through the powdery snow yesterday, clad in tweed coats, faux fur and Fair Isle-print knitwear.
Ski outfits were given a modern, urban twist, as down jackets were paired with wide-cut trousers in checked tweed, while zip-up ski suits were printed with a tri-colour tweed pattern.
The collection was characterised by a signature Chanel palette of winter white, beige, black and navy blue, animated with flashes of purple, fuchsia, brick and emerald green.
The final series of evening looks featured "snow-ball" skirts and dresses in chiffon and feathers, and garments embroidered with snowflakes in white and gold vinyl, accessorised with white pearl earrings to channel the "chalet spirit".
For the finale, models walked the runway to the beat of David Bowie’s Heroes, as they bid farewell to the German fashion designer during the showing of the last collection he designed.
Despite tears from the models during the final walk, the show was not a mournful goodbye. On each seat there was an illustration by Lagerfeld of himself and Coco Chanel, annotated with the words "The beat goes on..."
Virginie Viard and Eric Pfrunder will now take over as artistic directors at the French fashion house.
Paris' Grand Palais was a favoured location for Lagerfeld's Chanel presentations. It set the scene for many of his extravagant catwalk shows including a recreation of the Eiffel Tower, a cruise ship, and a Chanel-branded shopping centre.
The brand's Spring Summer 2017 show also took place at the Grand Palais, where robots walked the runway.