Appeared In
Special Issue
WWD Special Report issue 09/08/2009

PARIS — Karl Lagerfeld — the peripatetic designer, photographer, publisher and budding filmmaker — will be wearing yet another hat come Thursday night: shopkeeper.

He said he plans to join French Vogue editor in chief Carine Roitfeld to mind the Chanel boutique on the Avenue Montaigne in support of the Fashion’s Night Out initiative.

This story first appeared in the September 8, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

“I have no problem doing that. I’m a shopkeeper anyway since I have a bookshop,” said Lagerfeld, referring to his 7L boutique on the Rue de Lille here.

In fact, the designer relishes the prospect of the event, which will center on the so-called golden triangle shopping area bound by Avenue George V, Rue François 1er and Avenue Montaigne.

“I think it’s fun. I’m kind of in favor of animation,” said Lagerfeld, about whom swarms a battalion of TV cameras the minute he is out in public.

The designer also plans to plug the shopping festival on cable TV station Canal + with Roitfeld and Christian Dior chief executive Sidney Toledano, to be broadcast Wednesday, and then hold court on Michel Drucker’s new radio show on Europe 1, to be broadcast the night of the event, and filmed live for the Internet. “Now it’s exactly like doing TV,” he said, quickly adding, “It doesn’t bother me. I’m used to it.”

On Thursday, guests at Chanel’s Avenue Montaigne boutique will be welcomed to a cocktail party where Lagerfeld’s fall ready-to-wear will be the main theme. A special display chosen by French Vogue editors will showcase one of the signature black tweed jackets from the collection, as well as a selection of accessories, including a black tweed tote bag, pearl necklaces and Chanel’s iconic camellias.

Meanwhile, Chanel’s jewelry boutique next door will showcase a display of jewels and watches especially selected by French Vogue.

As a thank-you gift, guests will receive bottles of green and pink nail varnish from Chanel’s Jade Nail collection, which was inspired by the runway looks.

Elsewhere on the street, more gifts will be offered by Kenzo in the guise of Russian dolls during a Russian-themed cocktail party where key looks, chosen by French Vogue’s fashion director Emmanuelle Alt, will be modeled.

Louis Vuitton expects to host a fashion show and install a makeup bar courtesy of sister brand Guerlain, with makeup artist David Verdier doing on-the-spot makeovers.

On Rue François 1er, the Diane von Furstenberg boutique will host a nomad-themed evening inspired by the New York-based designer’s fall collection. Braziers will light up the storefront, while the interior will be decorated with rugs and cushions with entertainment provided by a live gypsy band.

Extending the gypsy theme, clairvoyants will be on hand at the cocktail parties hosted by Cartier and Sonya Rykiel.

Some houses plan to highlight their cultural heritage. At Fendi, artisans working for the Roman house will showcase the new Selleria handbags and the new fur collection, while Jil Sander will host an exhibition of French ceramist Pol Chambost, whose Sixties designs inspired the women’s wear fall collection.

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