Fashion / Style

For Cruise 20/21, Chanel used “fabrics we already had”

Chanel Cruise 20 21 Karim Sadli Mica Arganaraz

Launching a new Cruise collection amid coronavirus restrictions, Chanel was required to evolve.

The brand had planned for a Cruise 20/21 show in Capri. But of course, as per most runway shows of the season, this wasn't to be.

"So we had to adapt," explains Chanel Artistic Director of Fashion Collections, Virginie Viard. That included utilising fabrics already in Chanel's possession, rather than sourcing new ones. The result is a more conscious approach that feels like a fresh take on the best of Chanel. Worn by the likes of Mica Argañaraz, Karly Loyce, Camille Hurel and Cris Herrmann.


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"Not only did we decide to use fabrics that we already had, but the collection, more generally, evolved towards a trip around the Mediterranean … The islands, the scent of the eucalyptus, the pink shades of the bougainvillea."

The digital show, captured by Julien Pujol, ensures it's possible to communicate the feeling of another place without need to get on a plane. A similarly transportive soundtrack featuring Arca, Chromatics and Sébastien Tellier sets the scene.

As brands pivot in accordance with health and environmental concerns regarding travel, it's likely something we'll be seeing more often.

A mood of 'refined simplicity was Viard's touch point for the collection. Pieces were designed to be multi-purpose and easy to wear. A capsule wardrobe to transport - and transform - easily. To be utilised again and again.


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According to Chanel's styling notes, 'long skirts become strapless dresses when pulled up, long jackets in black chiffon can be worn by day over a triangle bikini, or by night with an embroidered bandeau top and jeans'. “And if worn over bare skin, it becomes a déshabillé,” notes Viard.

Like a Slim Aarons daydream, the collection was inspired by a laid back and intuitive approach to dressing on the Italian and French Riviera in the 1960s.

See Chanel's ‘Balade en Méditerranée’ Cruise 20 / 21 collection below.