Chanel hosts family reunion in absence of big haute couture show

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PARIS (REUTERS) - French fashion house Chanel chose to put family at the forefront of its Spring-Summer 2021 Haute Couture show, with models strutting under flower arches at a socially-distanced presentation with a few famous faces.

With France under Covid-19 restrictions, the label, like others, shared a video online on Tuesday (Jan 26) of its show to fashionistas at a time when traditional catwalk presentations, usually packed with editors, buyers and influencers, are not possible.

Actresses including Penelope Cruz, Marion Cotillard and Lily-Rose Depp, all Chanel ambassadors, watched from spaced out chairs as models walked down the steps of Paris' Grand Palais in an array of delicate floral designs onto a catwalk filled with petals and fairy lights.

Floral patterns adorned designer Virginie Viard's creations - embroidered on lace tops or stitched onto dresses. Viard also put ruffles on skirts, boleros and shirts and teamed buttoned waistcoats with trousers alongside Chanel's traditional tweed suits. Models also wore floral crowns on their heads.

"I knew we couldn't organise a big show, that we would have to invent something else, so I came up with the idea of a small cortege that would come down the stairs of the Grand Palais and pass beneath arches of flowers. Like a family celebration, a wedding," Viard said in show notes.

"I love big family reunions, when the generations all come together. It's so warm. There's this spirit at Chanel today. Because Chanel is also like a family."

The collection, in mainly pastel colours and black, featured an array of dreamy organza and tulle dresses as well as sparkling evening gowns.

Models walked off the catwalk to sit on chairs, each adorned with a flower.

The show closed with the traditional Chanel bride arriving on a horse and dressed in a 1920s-style long buttoned satin dress embroidered with sparkling butterflies.

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