Going to the South: Chanel presents its Cruise 2024/25 collection in Marseille

Creative Director Viriginie Viard staged her latest outing for Chanel in Marseille, the Southern capital of France. 

Chanel and Marseille. Do these two cultural phenomena go well together? The Icon of the French couture and Parisian elegance VS the busiest and bustling port city in the South? Chanel’s creative director Virginie Viard decided to give it a try and brought the fashion crowd to the second largest city in France, which is now living its Renaissance. After a Métiers d’Art pre-fall 2024 show in the streets of Manchester in December, Marseille seemed to be like a continuation of this new Chanel strategy: becoming more pop, more diverse and more unpredictable. 

Staged on the rooftop of Cité Radieuse, Le Corbusier's colourful concrete masterpiece made up of 337-apartments - the “vertical village” now hosts MAMO art-centre with ongoing cultural programming, the show focused on an urban wardrobe for a vacation in the city by the sea. Think, effortless tweeds, broderie anglaise, sharp denim, mini skirts, cosy cardigans, flats and elegant swimsuits.

“The sun, architecture, music and dance: Marseille also has a very strong sense of freedom,” Viard mused in her shownotes. “I was inspired by the codes of lifestyle of everyday life, and by all things that invite movement. The sea and the wind made me want to play with wetsuits.” On the catwalk, the bathing suits and tweed ensembles were stiled with hoods, a very bold move for a brand known for its timeless elegance. But then if you want to give it an extra dynamic, you have to take risks. There were also tweeds in acid colors, chunky pearl necklaces and mini logo purses that would please the younger audience. 

“Marseille is a city which puts me in touch with my emotions,” Virginie Viard continued. “I tried to capture its power of attraction, its breath of fresh air, and to convey the energy thar reins there.” It was definitely a bet to try to add a youthful dynamic into the most timeless of the houses. And judging by a vague of criticism from younger generations of influencers on the Internet (who are let’s be honest not yet invited to be a part of the Chanel crowd that the brand is ready to fly to destination shows) the show sparked mixed emotions and reactions. Which is better, than no interest at all. As they say, there is no bad publicity. 

Courtesy: Chanel

Text: Lidia Ageeva