An inside look at Chanel's Paris-Salzburg Metiers d'Art
This collection brought tears to Florence's eyes
When I attended the Chanel press presentation at G13 Gallery in Kelana Square this week, I was naturally (a little more than) excited to get up close and personal with the collection that has set tongues wagging ever since its presentation last December at the 18th-century, heritage-rich Schloss Leopoldskron Castle in Salzburg, Austria.
What I never expected was to walk away filled with awe and adulation for the craftsmanship behind each of these sumptuous, art-like pieces, so much so that I've since gushed about it to anybody who will listen, shoving my phone in their faces to demand appreciation for clothes that my lowly phone camera can not do justice to.
Let me say just this: the intricacy and detailing in this collection is beyond extraordinary. I just can't. More than once I caught myself not-so-secretly swooning and vocally marvelling over it all. There was my favourite: a dramatic chocolate cape jacket extensively embellished in feather work that made up a mass of alpine flowers, fern and moss resembling a fairy tale woodlands complete with pink bunnies and white geese in flight. There was the full-length gown with its bodice covered entirely in sequins and beads – each one laboriously sewn on by hand. Then there were the tiny edelweiss flowers sprinkled all over hand-woven tweed coats and suede leggings. And who could ignore the delicate pleat work in many a sleeve and dress hem? The entire collection was a true testament to the exquisite work of the Chanel-owned artisanal houses – the Lesage embroideries, the Lemarié feathers, the Lognon fabric pleating and the Lunéville beading by the Montex among others.
Cape jacket with fairy tale detail (Photo: ellemalaysia/Instagram)
But what I loved even more than the intricacy of the designs was their wearability and versatility. Despite having a distinct Maria von Trapp-esque quality to them – with references to traditional Austrian-isms such as the lederhosen, dirndl and Tyrolean ribbon work – each piece was plenty chic and contemporary. Don't let the elaborate full runway looks fool you; when taken apart, each piece could easily fit into your everyday wardrobe. The flamboyant high-necked sweater with dramatic ruffles? Pair it with a sleek, minimalistic below-the-knee leather skirt for workwear chic. The heavily embroidered jackets dripping with crystals? Work with ripped denim shorts and sandals for a modern spin.
Edelweiss flower detail (Photo: ellemalaysia/Instagram)
If you need any further convincing, know this: even Taeyang of Big Bang worked the women's red tweed coat from Look 13 during the Chanel Cruise presentation in Seoul. If, like me, you're sold on the collection, rest easy in knowing that you'll be able to get your hands on it really soon. The accessories will be available in stores from 19 June, while the ready-to-wear pieces will be available from 1 July. Mark those dates, girls.