JULIANNE MOORE, KRISTEN STEWART'S CELEBRITY ROULETTE
Chanel's guests were led to their seats in a giant recreated casino Tuesday inside Paris' Grand Palais — replete with roulette tables and fully-functioning gambling machines that had one Chinese fashionista addicted within minutes.
But the real gasps came when Kristen Stewart and a diamond-encrusted Julianne Moore walked out through an arch — both wearing bespoke Chanel couture — to take a seat around a celebrity-filled poker table in the centre of the catwalk. There they hugged, chatted, gambled and laughed all through the show.
Moore and Stewart grew close as they co-starred in "Still Alice," playing mother and daughter. They both dined together in an exclusive Paris restaurant last weekend.
"I like people when they're gambling and well dressed like in Monte Carlo," said Lagerfeld.
Fellow gamblers placing bets included singers Rita Ora and Vanessa Paradis and model Lara Stone, who were there to showcase Chanel's latest jewelry collection.
CHANEL'S 3-D COUTURE
Lagerfeld, 81, says the secret to feeling young is always looking to the future.
Nothing demonstrated this better than Chanel's bright, high-tech couture show that featured Coco Chanel's famed skirt-suit jacket made via 3-D printing.
"I like the idea of taking the most iconic jacket of the 20th century and turning that into an object that was impossible to make when that jacket was invented," explained the couturier.
The quilted jackets were completely seamless and seamstress-less — created by feeding Lagerfeld's sketches into a computer program.
"Computers are going to enter more and more in the evolution and techniques of fashion — you cannot resist. On the contrary, if it exists in its time couture will live on," he said.
CHANEL'S '80s SHOULDERS
A 1980s' flavour lingered in the air for fall-winter in a largely black-and-white show, with oversized truncated jackets, large square shoulders, epaulettes and dramatic lapels.
The shoes were a standout — backless stilettos with a split tongue on the front that Lagerfeld compared to "airplanes children make with folded paper."
The 67-piece-stong collection mainly played it safe, but designs frothily loosened up toward the end, with tailoring that harked to the fizz fizz years of the '20s. Feathered fringing adorned loose, long cocktail dresses, evoking the famed "Flapper" era.
Meanwhile, modernized '20s "bob" wigs — worn in identical form by all models — also mirrored this era, giving the collection a homogenous, fem-bot feel that riffed off of the futuristic 3-D printing.
BOUCHRA JARRAR MAKES CONTRASTS
Bouchra Jarrar mixed her signature contrasting styles with a dash of the '50s in her slick show Tuesday.
Bandeau-style croptops evoked one-half of a post-War bikini — worn over high-waisted retro pants or softly colored voluminous culottes that could have been worn by Marilyn Monroe.
As ever with the Moroccan-born designer, contradictions were whispered in the textures and styles. Feminine pale blues, yellows and nude pink were punctuated with flashes of black.
And several looks mixed up sportswear, daywear and eveningwear with panache. One couture textured taupe croptop had an exposed midriff, a sporty miniskirt and glamorous ankle-length sheer organza.
Jarrar showed off her couture talent with a series of multi-colour, frothy, fur-feather asymmetrical tops — and again, in her signature draping with a beautiful pale blue gown with a gold band.
Debut designer Yacine Aouadi channeled black in his couture presentation, saying it's the colour associated with mystery.
"For my first collection, I wanted to evoke superstition, so I used black, as I'm still afraid if my (fashion) house is going to take off or not," he said humbly from the show venue in the Grand Palais.
The 13-piece-strong show would seem to set the French-born designer, who cut his teeth at Balmain, in a good place.
Aouadi mixed Victorian styles such as high austere collars and intricate black lacework with sporty cropped skirts and zippers, and sheer organza sections with decorative writing that, when worn on skin, resembles tattoos.
"I wanted to mix in the tattoo elements, to break up the historic allusions," he said.
He struck a fine balance, mixing sometimes ecclesiastical styles and myriad chevrons with clean, gentle A-line shapes into highly wearable looks.
Thomas Adamson can be followed at http://Twitter.com/ThomasAdamsonAP