Karl Lagerfeld has an optimistic read about the changing atmosphere in France under President Emmanuel Macron. “It’s the feeling I have, and the mood,” he explained. As a foreigner in Paris, he says he can sense a shift: “The stranger can say, ‘This is French’ better than the Frenchman.” Besides, he knows Macron and his wife, Brigitte. “I met him when he wasn’t even in politics. They are very good people. Not pretentious. He’s very popular,” Lagerfeld added.

It sounds silly to say, but the presentation of the Chanel Haute Couture show was unpretentious, too. The set was a classic French garden with a fountain, sandy paths, and rose-threaded pergolas. In other words: You knew where you were – not on your way to the moon in a Chanel rocket or sitting in awe at the foot of a roaring cascade in the Gorges du Verdon. Instead, the garden trope took us back to what the couture season in Paris used to be: a breath of spring wrapped in a prettiness designed to lure customers to Chanel HQ on the Rue Cambon.

Lagerfeld said he’d been led by spontaneity, without preplanning: “I’m not a marketing person; I don’t know what I’m doing in a way—it’s just a feeling.” The silhouettes did read that way—as dashed-off pastel-themed varieties in passages of Chanel tweeds, chiffon dresses, and eveningwear. They ranged from voluminously wide to tiered to perpendicularly slim and narrow. The prettiest came last: tiny metallic mini dresses, veiled with a covering of chiffon to the ground.

This article first appeared on Vogue.com.



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