Last week the fashion world descended upon Dallas for this year’s prestigious Chanel Métiers d’Art show. An homage to classic Texan history, the show was held at the home of the Texas State Fair; Americana Chanel flags hung from the ceiling and models sauntered down a straw covered dirt track runway wearing a collection Lagerfeld described as "a romantic Texas fantasy". Prairie dresses, denim and fringed leather were paired with Native American style feathers and a hosiery nod to the traditional cowboy boot.
Here, fashion director Katie Shillingford selects her top 10 moments from the whirlwind trip to Dallas, a honky-tonk hoedown, complete with mechanical bull, to a recreation of Coco Chanel’s French home, and a luxuriously retro drive-in movie theatre.
1. Guests were seated in rows of gleaming vintage American cars, parked up for a drive-in movie style feature of the latest Chanel film The Return, written and directed by Karl Lagerfeld. André Leon Talley chauffeuring Anna Wintour and Lagerfeld himself in a scarlet convertible was certainly a sight to behold.
2. Huge flag chandeliers hung the length of the catwalk, emblazoned with red, white and blue Chanel logos, stars and stripes, whilst a cowboy played the harmonica in a rocking chair, creating the perfect western shoot out scenario.
3. One of the most genius touches of the collection were the two-tone, graphic cut-out tights that gave the impression the models were all decked out in cowboy boots.
4. The after party was a good old fashioned hoedown, complete with honky-tonk music, beer barrels and a straw strewn dance floor. Guests and models embraced the rodeo spirit, with the likes of Lily Collins and Lindsay Wixson jumping aboard the huge mechanical bull.
5. A visit had to be paid to the Dallas Museum of Moden Art, which housed a recreation of La Pausa, Chanel’s southern French villa. Texan art collecting duo Wendy and Emery Reves were the later residents of the house, and donated its entire contents to the museum. The detailed recreation includes Chanel’s hallway, inspired by the orphanage in which she spent her childhood.
6. Hairdresser Sam McKnight created bow hairpieces that attached to the models' low slung, tousled ponytails – although his shining moment had to be a cameo as a sought after butler in The Return.
7. The models carried classic quilted Chanel bags with typical western adornments of tan leather, feathers and fringing.
8. It is simply not an option to go to Dallas and not visit Southfork, the iconic building that stood proudly in the exterior scenes for the epochal 80s TV classic, Dallas.
9. The intertwining history of Chanel and Dallas was the inspiration for the show; Coco Chanel visited Texas in 1957 as a guest of Stanley Marcus, owner of luxury retailer Neiman Marcus. During her stay she was awarded the store's highly respected prize for Distinguished Service in the Field of Fashion.
10. Cowboy hats are taken very seriously indeed in Dallas, both in the show and outside of it. Men at Dallas airport were seen carrying peculiar shaped boxes, which were later discovered to be specially designed hatboxes to accommodate their headgear.
Text by Rhiannon Wastell