If there's one lesson we've learned from fashion, it's to never expect any less than grandeur from Karl Lagerfeld and Chanel. The designer has used his shows for the iconic fashion house to elevate what the fashion show can do and make statements that are ripe for interpretation. Last season's space-age show seemed to hint at a desire to escape from the real world and explore the galaxies (perhaps not a coincidence given the election of a certain someone), but that display now serves as a marked contrast to Chanel's SS18 show today, which was planted firmly on Earth and hinted at what we needed to fix about it.
In their usual location of the Grand Palais, Chanel built an extravagant and beautifully realistic 30-foot waterfall complete with shrubbery and caves for the models to enter and walk through. Speaking of models, none other than fashion month's breakout star Kaia Gerber opened the show, joining Lagerfeld muses like Soo Joo Park and Charlotte Free. As usual, the setting hinted at what was to walk down the runway, classic Chanel pieces that were reimagined to fit the naturalistic theme.
Plastic rainwear took over the runway, in the form of long tea gloves, fedoras, shoulder hoods, and long cover-up wraps, making Chanel the most durable it's ever been (don't go hiking in these get-ups still). Every look was even paired with the most enviable plastic rainboots, with glossy black and white heels. Take notes, Hunter. The signature tweed was constructed into pantsuits, fringed skirts, and crop-tops, appropriately being given royal blue and yellow hues. But as standard with Chanel, it was the accessories that stood out. The bold transparent totes were welcome additions to their history of kitschy handbags, while the inflated birdcage-like bag is a work of art in itself. Katy Perry wishes that she felt like this plastic bag.
While Lagerfeld has never been one for subtlety, he has always refrained from explaining what he tries to relay with any of his shows. But if his embrace of the beautiful, natural aspects of the Earth are any indication, and given how climate change deniers are becoming more prominent in our world, Chanel seems to be sending a message about our environment and why it needs to be preserved as much as can be. Maybe with these looks, we'll look just as fab saving our planet.