For the Fall/Winter 2021 collection, outside influences are reinterpreted through the house’s signature styling

Chanel’s latest collection is an audacious rethinking of a night out—merging cool Parisian chic with the ambiance of ski holidays. For Fall/Winter 2021, creative director Virginie Viard takes the collection to an intimate space, unusual for the French fashion house that typically makes a spotlight for itself with grandiose spectacle. The show is presented in Chez Castel, the legendary Left Bank nightclub that once drew the likes of Françoise Hardy and Mick Jagger.

Staged by the duo Inez & Vinoodh, the show plays on the elements of contrast that define the collection—disparate in material, shape, color, and style. Chanel remains consistent in its more traditional styling, like its signature tweed, while experimenting with a conglomeration of influences outside of the house, mostly in the form of winter wear that looks actually suitable for the cold. A number of eras emerge in the line: the boldly patterned sweaters of the ’80s, the belly chains of the ’90s, the goth black rimmed eyeliner of the early 2000s. Without any abrasive statement pieces, the fashion house utilizes metallics, bold colors, sheer fabrics, and lush furs to convey a sense of celebration.

The models get ready like showgirls under a black and white filter that jolts into full color as they take the runway. They drop their white patent sheepskin and down jackets at the coat check, revealing delicate evening dresses and sharp button downs. The shoes range from furs to two-toned boots, strappy chained sandals to black bowed pumps.

For Chanel, a night out is elegant in its fragmented surplus. The collection is excited to experiment, excited for dressing up and going out, excited for intimate nights with vibrant people.

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