Chanel AW12, Grand Palais, Paris

Chanel Fall 2012 show, Grand Palais, Paris

The clear glass sand crunch under my feet and my head jolts down to see I’ve passed through the gates (of fashion security, that is) and stepped into the legendary show venue of Chanel. My eyes are drawn up to marvel at the majestic copper-green cage of the Grand Palais, then slide down along the watery purple gradient walls. At the floor a maze of mineral stalagmites create an ambience of hidden power and cryptic weakness; even the white-painted seats look like crystalline overgrowth. Fortress of Solitude? Perhaps, but the fervid show-goer traffic outside seems to disagree, surely Superman would’ve ensured it better hidden.  The stage slowly drains of organic writhing as the audience settle in their hand-labelled seats, and just before the music there is an eerie moment of calm.
The collection trickles out, jewel-encrusted eyebrows and slick ponytails bobbing atop rocky textures - bouclé and heavy wool coats, layered in the most ‘un-Chanel’ like manner (if such manner even exist anymore, as Karl systematically breaks all boundaries each season) one that rewrites Paris street fashion when it involves bare legs. Crystal encrusted sleeves finish a scratchy graphite bouclé jacket,  layered on petrol-slick gathered chiffon… and little boy bags, some painted to resemble guts of agate stones. The shoes too are super-natural, half boot-half mary janes, with transparent stalagmites for heels. Chanel is magic, that has been an undeniable fact since Coco herself sat at the mirrored steps on 31 Rue Cambon and orchestrated her collections, but to be present at a show has truly been a taste of the sorcery behind the designs and philosophy.

Thank you Sarah for being so accommodating even at such late notice.

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60 Comments

  1. I LOVE the crystals. I just can’t get past the set to even start to look at the clothes. Amazing!

  2. Dan

    Love this post! Everything seems so magical! :-)

  3. wow, you captured this fashion show prefectly!! we always love looking at your photos, great job!

    xx, Sabinna and David
    Broken Cookies

  4. Wow Shini, what a magical experience this must have been. Such sumptuous images, thank you so much for sharing this up-close-and-personal view of the show (I too dream of attending a Chanel show).

    Briony xx

  5. Oh my, those heels are divine.. I think I’m in love.
    Lovely pictures, Shini, as always :)

  6. stunning!

    Bises,
    monkeyshines
    http://monkeyshines-monkeyshines.blogspot.com/

  7. Fantastic photo’s, amazing!
    xx

  8. always amazing photos!

  9. Wow you must of had an amazing time! This collection is by far one of my favourites,its completely mesmerising! A True Genius at work here! Great post :)

    Take care,Daniella xox

  10. Very beautiful, Shini! Gorgeous pictures from what I can only imagine is an affair to remember!

    Nora

  11. hands down most amazing collection this fall!

    http://www.styleandshades.blogspot.com

  12. The photos are amazing, the collection so impeccable and surreal. Thanks Shini for taking all of us with you in every step of your experience through your writing too – I love that I can feel abit of how magically the whole scene might have unfolded.

  13. more than anything i was looking forward to your photos of this! it’s magic in pictures, and your writing really captured it as well.

  14. Seraphina

    Your camera captures so much detail! All of your photos are absolutely stunning.

  15. I was blown away by the whole show, in a way only chanel can pull off. The pieces are absolutly devine while standing on their own, but put in this beautiful and peaceful ambiance? Fashion mecca.
    Material Fixations

  16. What a spectacular show to have attended! Crystal paradise, indeed. x

    http://www.TheFancyTeacup.com

  17. The entire set-up is unreal! I’m almost guilty for being more impressed by the show setting than the actual show itself…

  18. Wow, wow, wow. Can I decorate my whole apartment like this? Then can I wear the coat in photo #13 with the red sequined skirt in #16? Goodness, your photos are breath-taking, Shini.

    ~F

  19. Perfect runway, we love this collection!!
    Very beautiful photos, xo.

  20. Oh My! Theses are such amazing photos!!!!!
    I feel like im actually there!!

    Love from Seoul,
    Serena

    http://nostalgicsenses.blogspot.com

  21. Beautiful pictures!

  22. such mesmerizing pictures Shini!!
    your camera definitely meets its fated owner ~
    some pictures here look even better than the collections online, because you’ve decided to focus on certain aspects like the glitter, or Karl Lagerfeld.
    such an interesting runway review here :D

    cheers,
    xx

    Style Hostess

  23. What an absolute magical show and a gorgeous collection. Love the hues, the petite bags, and details.

    http://www.littleredbook-thatshaute.blogspot.com

  24. This is incredible Shini. The way you’ve described it is absolutely perfect… as if Chanel and Karl are the most powerful warlords in a mystical Lord of the Rings type setting. It’s a beautiful and enchanting image. The best thing though is Chanel lives up to the hype with this collection.

    The way Chanel incorporates a substantial theme into all aspects of the show while still staying true to the brand’s history is inspiring and genius. There is no other fashion house doing this so well. It is what makes a Chanel show one of the most hotly anticipated… and all the clothes completely drool worthy.

    Please please please get a piece from this collection. I think I would die just to see it in real life.

    xx

  25. your always have the most gorgeous shots

    http://www.vasilievablog.com/
    x

  26. goodness, these pics are awesome. i don’t know how he’s doing it but i love every presentation. have you seen any of those documentaries on arte about chanel’s fashion shows? i’ve watched two different ones already and they’re so fun to watch – last minute sewing, the separate presentation room for employers (a part of the actual show)… the gathering and congratulating after the show… sigh, i wish i could attend a show in person once in my life.

  27. This collection of Chanel is really lovely! And wow what a lot of paparazzi! X

  28. So glad you got to cover this to share with us! It can be tedious to go through runway look photos but I love seeing your highlights. It’s definitely hard to miss the crystal cave inspiration, but I do wish Karl pushed it more in terms of the clothes this season. Maybe it’s just me, but there’s a slight disjuncture between the clothes versus the shoes, accessories, even detailing. I like that he pushed the boundaries of color coordination this season and took advantage of that from the inspiration.

  29. Chanel was incredible, as walways! Love Miroslava’s style!!

    I’m so in love with your blog!!!

    http://www.justreptilia.com

    xx

  30. Amazing! Such gorgeous collection in finer details, I would have smuggle one of the smaller crystal props to London.

  31. You saw the Chanel show!! Amazing!

    Love the crystals and clothes, of course:)

    xx.

  32. LUCKY U! Is there anybody out there who doesn’t want to attend chanel’s fashion show? I don’t think so! :-)

    http://hunt-the-fox.blogspot.com/

  33. LOVE IT! stunning

    xx
    http://www.maddenim.blogspot.com/

  34. So lovee the set of this show. and your pictures beautiful as always!
    xx lovee
    http://elenitadevries.blogspot.com

  35. absolut georgeus!
    jadore chanel

    thechicmode.blogspot.com

  36. Loved your description Shini! And beautiful pictures, what a breathtaking venue!

    http://girlinthelens.com/

  37. Amazing , marvelous photos, thank you!

    Have the best weekend!

    Big hugs!
    Inés

    SimplyClassyMe.blogspot.com

  38. I always adore your photos, they’re magical in themselves, but when you add Chanel’s magic to them… Ah, I love it! Thanks for an amazing post once again!

  39. such a funky clothes, love it! great pictures. wish I was there.

  40. couldnt have described it better than you. supermanly and so out of a dream. the setting like a glasshouse, inside of which icy glass again.
    the collection is awe dropping

  41. absolutely beautiful. so jealous you could be there!
    xx, http://wordbyjessie.com/

  42. Wow, I am so amazed! This is a masterpiece, the whole runway is perfect to my mind

    http://nastya-said.blogspot.com/

  43. It looks so other-worldly, must have been quite the experience! X

  44. Wow. The stalagmites are amazing. Chanel’s shows impress me more every time. Beautiful collection. The shoes! Hello!

  45. wow what an experience!

  46. These pictures are truly amazing.
    Chanel’s shows are always ones that I am dying to look out for, for the fashion being illustrated within the setting too.
    Inspiring

    xo

  47. wonderfull

  48. great photos!!

  49. I have been a long-time fan of your keen eyes for details and this is just another marvelous photos that definitely do justice for Chanel. Seeing how the crystals, mixed textures, and vibrant colours through your lenses is a pleasure for me.

  50. As much as I often despise Lagerfeld’s media presence (see: latest comments re: Adele), I do love his collections. Sometimes all I can do is hope that his shenanigans are all part of an elaborate performance art and the comments he makes are in fact just satire. Well, I think it’s obvious he is a “performer,” but if those are his views on women, it really is pretty appalling…I realize it’s the fashion industry, but still…

    In any event, great photos, Shini!

  51. This is just so MAGICAL!! xx

  52. vvn

    Sometimes I wish Chanel shows could just feel classic again. The shows are always very impressive but I think there has been too much focus on making Chanel a young and “it” brand and I feel like it’s losing its soul.

  53. The crystals and sheen are just amazing—I cannot get over those shoes most especially! These pictures are superb, Shini—I feel like I am there :)

  54. cool blog, i love Chanel!! :))

    http://l-insp-ecteur.blogspot.com/

  55. Wow you took amazing pictures of the Chanel défilé. Love them!

    x Romi
    http://blaastyle.blogspot.com

  56. Am already wondering how I can attach rainbow crystals to my boring black winter coats – even though winter is supposedly over …

  57. The green velvet bag…

    All the pictures are amazing..

    Kiss,

    Sara

  58. Dan

    사진보다 체하겠어 너무 잘 찍어서..

  59. I like watch the fashion show especially the Chanel show.

  60. [...] used to, and loving, hotel breakfasts Chanel AW12 in Paris, still have a crush on that canary-yellow boy [...]