Of course, 2013 is all about the new, the fresh and the innovative, but sometimes there is just no beating a classic, as proved by the latest vote winning post on the AnOther Loves stream – these Chanel trainers. Marrying the supreme chic of the ultimate Parisian fashion house with the sportswear derived high top, this timeless combination, chosen by AnOther’s This or That columnist and Chanel aficionado Melanie Crété, has reigned supreme, even amid the extravagant stylistic flourishes of London’s menswear fashion week.
The impact of World War I – from the basic material shortages to the necessity of creating practical wear for women taking over male roles in factories and fields – forced a change in perspective on women’s clothing, one that Coco Chanel herself was key in popularising during the war and perpetuating long after victory was won. Her use of jersey caused scandal with the establishment – it was traditionally a material reserved for undergarments – but women everywhere were won over by its comfort and elegance. In the creation of items that moved and breathed, Chanel marked the transition from the 19th century's stiff formalwear to the modern sportswear prevalent today. And this spirit lives on in the footwear of the Chanel brand, which is an exquisite combination of high end chic and comfort, an aesthetic that has been adopted by fashion houses the world over. Isabel Marant wedge sneakers were the hit of S/S12, and Pierre Hardy, the shoe designer for Balenciaga since 2001, popularised elaborately studded and printed trainers, both of which are representive of the Flat Shoe Trend heralded by AnOther last season. And the trend works both ways, with renowned sportswear brands such as Nike and New Balance creating collections that are decidedly not for vigorous exercise.
"Chanel's use of jersey caused scandal with the establishment – it was traditionally a material reserved for undergarments – but women everywhere were won over by its comfort and elegance"
So, with the womenswear fashion weeks looming on the horizon, and with our thoughts turning to comfort in the January chill, we speak to Crété about her passion for Chanel and what she’s excited about in 2013.
Why did you Love these trainers?
I kind of love everything branded with the double CC logo.
Where did you find them?
I randomly stumbled upon the picture on Tumblr, as I always do.
What would you wear them with?
I'd wear them with some denim cropped trousers, white shirt (no Breton), and a pair of tortoise Miu Miu sunnies.
Do you own any Chanel? What is your favourite piece?
I own a Chanel logo brooch and a 90s necklace I bought in a vintage shop in Paris nearly 10 years ago. I've recently came across a fashion editorial with Azealia Banks wearing the same necklace. It has crystals encrusted on the double CC logo, ghetto chic. But my favourite piece is my watch, an original gold Premiere – Chanel's first watch – whose shape was inspired by the octagonal geometry of the No. 5 perfume bottle stopper and the Place Vendôme. It was a present from my dad to my mum when I was a kid but she would only wear it for very special occasions so I managed to get her to offer it back to me a couple of years ago and I wear it pretty much everyday.
What's on your wishlist for S/S13?
Various vintage Eames armchairs.
Who is your Chanel style icon?
Helena Christensen and Claudia Schiffer circa 1991.
What are you looking forward to in 2013?
Jumping into the lake of Zurich, the Zurich See, after work this summer.
What was the last thing you bought?
I've literally just booked a trip to NYC for this spring, and bought a simple beige shirt on sale from the Acne website.
Melanie Crété's new column, This or That, launches on AnOther next Tuesday.