Virginie Viard Brings Equestrian Spirit to CHANEL Collection
An exclusive look at CHANEL’s Haute Couture show
Ethereal dresses, textural details, and equestrian references emerged in CHANEL’s Spring-Summer 2022 Haute Couture collection. Held at the Grand Palais Éphémère in Paris, the collection’s show featured stunning creations that presented the exceptional workmanship of CHANEL’s métiers d’art ateliers.
“It’s like a conversation that crosses time,” said creative director Virginie Viard, referring to the show’s creative influences that spanned Gabrielle Chanel, Karl Lagerfield, and other designers.
Set to music composed by songwriter Sébastien Tellier, the show opened with Charlotte Casiraghi, Grace Kelly’s granddaughter—a CHANEL ambassador. Dressed in a black tweed jacket with jewelled buttons, Casiraghi rode in on horseback—a nod to Gabrielle Chanel and her affinity for horsemanship.
Texture played a significant role in the collection. In one instance, a short dress embroidered to create a tweed pattern peeked from under a multicolour lamé open jacket and overskirt. To create the look of the dress, artisans intertwined sequins using the Luneville crochet hook, a method that took 200 hours.
Tweed—CHANEL’s emblematic textile—also took the spotlight in a classic beige and red checkered coat dress with a traditional button closure and patch pockets. The braid trim by Atelier Denis took over 28 hours to make, bringing more of the equestrian flavour.
Notable at the show was a midnight blue lace dress, topped with a short cape. Both dress and cape featured constructivist-inspired embroidery composed of approximately 60,000 embroidered elements—rings, strass, beads, and sequins—requiring 270 hours of work to prepare.
Another highlight was a flouncy camisole paired with a pleated draping maxi in creamy ivory punctuated by a single black bow. Atelier Lemarie embroidered both items through a process that took hundreds of hours.