This morning, Karl Lagerfeld was on a mission to make tech cool, transforming the Grand Palais into the chicest Chanel Data Centre. But this was no nerdy computer lab – from the neat multi-coloured wiring, flashing lights and rows of shiny servers and circuit boards, to the first models who opened the show dressed as a cross between Daft Punk and a couple of Stormtroopers (but in tweed twinsets of course) this was where IT met couture. To the soundtrack of a remix of Donna Summer's "I Feel Love," Arizona Muse followed the Stormtrooper duo, wearing a white tweed jacket over a dusky pink negligee, introducing us to lots more lacy, diaphanous underwear worn as daywear that was to come throughout the collection. The classic Chanel bouclé jacket and tweed twinsets were updated for SS17 in an array of technicolour and graphic digital prints, and looks were completed with baseball hats worn at a jaunty skater-girl angle, pearl necklaces, light-up clutches or laptop case bags and two-tone metallic flats or booties.
While Kendall Jenner, now a Chanel regular, was notably absent, having returned home to be with her family following the armed robbery, the catwalk lineup included Edie Campbell, Anna Ewers, Taylor Hill, Jasmine Tookes, Binx Walton, Molly Bair, Lineisy Montero, Soo-Joo Park and Mica Arganaraz. This was an all-star cast and the front row was just as impressive with Lily Rose Depp, Courtney Love, Francis Bean Cobain, Carla Bruni Sarkozy, Ines de la Fressange, Roger Federer and Usher all in attendance.
Sam McKnight, a longtime Chanel collaborator, styled the models' hair into side ponytails secured with colourful hairbands adorned with brightly coloured interlocking 'C's that matched the eye-catching wires making up the set. Similarly, the threads woven through the iconic Chanel tweed also mirrored the colourful cables, and the billowing chiffon dresses which closed the show were detailed with kaleidoscopic digi-prints. The data-themed handbags with micro lights flashing with personalised messages – reading 'How are you?' and 'Hello' – will undoubtedly be a standout accessory of the season. Is this the moment fashion technology finally becomes cool? A number of brave designers have already dabbled in wearable tech to minimal success but Lagerfeld's foray was considerably more accomplished and integratable. With all the tongue-in-cheek fun, elegance, and spectacle we might expect from a Chanel show, Kaiser Karl did not disappoint. Welcome to the fashion future.