Chanel's Latest Collection Was Inspired by Egypt, and Includes Hieroglyphic Jeans

Karl Lagerfeld brought his latest Chanel Métiers d’Art collection to New York City on Tuesday evening, but rather than pay tribute to Manhattan, as Donatella Versace did with her pre-fall show here on Sunday, his theme was Egypt. And it was a pretty fantastic trip.


VIDEO: See Chanel Métiers d’Art Collection in New York City

It helps, of course, that Lagerfeld’s imagination recognizes neither boundaries nor borders, and his choice of setting — the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Temple of Dendur — certainly set the mood more efficiently than flying everyone to Cairo. Lagerfeld’s recent collections have seemed sharper and more focused, this one laser sharp with clothes that referenced Egypt deftly. Rather than going full King Tut, he showed restraint with the occasional pharaoh’s neckline or a pyramid-shaped handbag and scarab-shaped jewels. Still, several models appeared with their legs painted gold, ready for the sarcophagus.




Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images


Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images


Nevertheless, this collection, which seeks to show off the craftsmanship of Chanel’s many ateliers and subsidiaries, seemed to be more about practical, desirable clothes than jokey references. Certainly, the embroidered and gilded tweed jackets that fit like sweaters will be covetable for seasons to come, cozy but also professional looking (even the gold tunic worn by Pharrell Williams). The best items, in fact, didn’t seem mummified at all — gold boots, shredded denim, Fair Isle knits, and graffiti prints that were as enigmatic as hieroglyphics.

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