The luxury Maison pays homage to Florence by staging a show oozing French glamour
Words: Chidozie Obasi
After a variety of shows staged in tropical locations – as it happens, May hosts the Resort collections around the world – Chanel is no stranger to innovation. The luxury house will present its 2021-22 Métiers d’art collection in Florence, Italy, with a catwalk show to be held on June 7th 2022. The collection was first held in December 2021 at le19M, the new Parisian building conceived by Chanel and dedicated to the Fashion Métiers d’art. It goes without saying that artistic craftsmanship and artisanal know-how are anchored in the history of Florence, rich with a cultural heritage and ancestral savoir-faire that are very much alive today. Nearly after seven years that the 2015-16 Métiers d’art show was held at the legendary Cinecittà studios in Rome, this latest shows reaffirms Chanel’s close ties with italy and its cultural tradition, keeping afloat an affiliation with both countries. The affiliation, initiated by Gabrielle Chanel herself, partially lingers thanks to the italian factories acquired by the House: imbued into the circle of the Fashion ateliers, shoemakers, leather workers, tanneries and thread manufacturers bring their know-how to the service of creativity and artisanal glory. That, with a willingness to push the boundaries of innovation, makes it a venerable tribute to the savoir-faire of the Métiers d’art, bringing together a show that once again shows Chanel’s commitment to the influence of its exceptional skill across the entire world. Wonder away.
EMBROIDERER SINCE 1939
The magic of the Montex embroidery atelier comes from their ability to combine ancestral traditions with contemporary creation. Its precious motifs, of a sophisticated modernity, magnify the CHANEL collections. They are made using needlework, the Lunéville crochet technique or on the Cornely, a century-old embroidery machine guided by the hand. Montex joined the Métiers d’art in 2011.
GOLDSMITH SINCE 1950
Precise gestures, meticulous workmanship, accuracy of proportions, perfecting the object… Robert Goossens developed a set of technical skills caught between sculpture and goldsmithing. From 1954, he recreated Byzantine jewellery with Gabrielle Chanel, and he later designed some of the furniture for her apartment at 31 rue Cambon. The House of Goossens perpetuates the heritage of its founder and today continues to respond to the imagination of CHANEL. Goossens joined the Métiers d’art in 2005.
SHOEMAKER SINCE 1894
From the carving of the last and the assembling to the thread that sews the upper to the sole, the shoes designed by Massaro for CHANEL are made entirely by hand, in a perpetual quest for both elegance and comfort. Although Massaro joined the Métiers d’art in 2002, its collaboration with CHANEL began in 1957 with the emblematic two-tone shoe and has continued from collection to collection, on the occasion of the Haute Couture and Métiers d’art shows.
FEATHER WORKER SINCE 1880 AND FLOWER MAKER
Since the 1960s, CHANEL’s emblematic camellias, like all of Lemarié’s floral ornaments, have been hand assembled petal by petal. In the draught-free workshops of le19M, armfuls of feathers are sorted one by one, then combed, curled, smoothed, glued and even woven. Lemarié is an essential partner to CHANEL for all of its collections and joined the Métiers d’art in 1996. The House also excels in couture sewing and creates exceptional inlays, flounces, smocking and pleats thanks to the savoir-faire of the Ateliers Lognon.
All of Lemarié’s savoir-faire have been honoured in the 2021/22 Métiers d’art collection. Starting with feathers, then flowers and finally couture sewing.
HATTER AND MILLINER SINCE 1936
Heir to a savoir-faire established in Paris since the 14th century, Maison Michel preserves and hands down the secrets of the hatmaker’s trade. In its le19M ateliers, crowns and brims are handcrafted on 3,000 lime wood forms before being decorated with braids, flowers, feathers and other embellishments by the House milliners. Maison Michel joined the Métiers d’art in 1997. Its boaters, little veils, caps and berets are all in keeping with the CHANEL codes and accessorise every collectio
EMBROIDERER SINCE 1924 AND TWEED MAKER
A creative legend which has collaborated with the greatest of couturiers, Lesage designs and embroiders sumptuous motifs. Since 1996, it has also been reinventing the tweed so dear to CHANEL, mixing the most unexpected materials with woollen yarns. A CHANEL partner since 1983, Lesage joined the CHANEL Métiers d’art in 2002 and continues this fruitful creative dialogue under the impetus of Virginie Viard. At le19M, Lesage brings together its ateliers, its unique collection of samples and its school where embroiderers hand down the secrets of their savoir-faire to the next generations.
PLEATER SINCE 1853
Knife, flat, sunray, Watteau or peacock… Lognon has more than 3,000 kraft cardboard folding moulds, that look like origami. Some are over one hundred years old, others have just been created, because the Lognon artisans are constantly looking for new pleats, including for the CHANEL Creation Studio. Giving shape and movement to the most varied of fabrics is a truly virtuoso skill, a four-handed operation in perfect synchronisation that requires physical strength, extreme meticulousness, experience of touch and an expert knowledge in the specificities of textiles. Lognon joined Lemarié and the Métiers d’art in 2013.
On the occasion of the 2021/22 Métiers d’art collection making a stop-over in Florence, actress and ambassador Penélope Cruz and director and loyal friend of the House Sofia Coppola are sharing their feelings about the work made by artisans, Virginie Viard’s creations and the overall impression of beauty quintessential to Florence.
2021/22 Métiers d’art Show In Florence
The grand finale of a memorable evening was given to Berlin-based South Korean deejay Peggy Gou, a very unique character in the music scene: she is in fact a producer, disc jockey and designer. Her innovative sound, dubbed ‘K-house’ – with a clear reference to K-pop – has played a key role in her success, as much as her looks. Peggy Gou is a style icon, the spokesperson for a new generation of DJs who if no longer hiding in the darkness of a club, but sporting highly original looks, an integral part of their performances.