The Chanel Spring 2014 Show Approacheth: Our Anticipatory 10-Step Guide to Preparing Like a Lagerfeld
The Chanel Spring 2014 runway show happens tomorrow morning at exactly 4:30 AM Eastern Time, and if you have the slightest shard of artistic inclination in your body, this is an event of wake up, drop everything, call in sick to work-level importance. The House of Chanel does not adjust its schedule according to the needs of the populace; the populace must adjust their schedule according to the whims of the House of Chanel.
After all, Chanel has a long, rich history of radical artistic statements that became instant worldwide trends, from Coco Chanel's unexpected 1954 comeback with the now-iconic Chanel suit, to Karl Lagerfeld's controversial hemlines, chains, and temporary tattoos that were once decried for desecrating the brand, but have only made Chanel cooler, and more relevant, than ever before.
Respects must be paid, young artistes. And I can tell from your faces that you are not ready. Who cares if it's the crack of dawn? Who cares if you have work a few hours later? As Rilke once said (not about Chanel), "You must change your life!"
1. Wake after exactly seven hours of sleep, which is Karl's magical nighttime number. This means you'll need to go to bed at 9:30 tonight. Just do it.
2. Dress in your finest. The only qualifications: 1) It must be black and/or white. 2) It must be comfortable. Coco Chanel became famous for liberating the artificial female hourglass of the Belle Époque fashions that came before her, so don't you dare strap on any sort of restricting Spanx thing.
3. Yes, you should stay home from work tomorrow! Karl thinks people who work in an office are boring, anyway, and he doesn't do meetings. You're probably also drinking coffee while reading this—ugh, how crass. Is that a carbohydrate?
4. Tired? Get crazy with Karl's drug of choice: Diet Coke. The man doesn't drink, smoke, do drugs, or touch hot beverages, but he can chug Diet Coke in the middle of the night and still sleep. Make sure you guzzle a can or two every hour. Heeeere's breakfast! If you need more sustenance, you're allowed a steamed apple. Have your staff prepare it.
5. Empty every bit of dry shampoo you can find into your hair until your locks reach Karl's level of shocking whiteness. After all, white is the color of holiness, is it not? And naturally, Karl is our fashion Pope.
6. Daydream. Look out the window. Stay off the Internet. Genius is not born from Twitter. Do not check your watch. Karl never checks his watch while designing. Wait. Maybe you should check it. Has the show started yet? Is that watch...plastic?
7. It's cold at 4:30 AM, so start a bonfire using every item of clothing you own that doesn't fit perfectly. If there's one thing Karl and Coco would have agreed on, it's the infinite importance of the right fit. Coco inserted heavy chains into her hems to make them hang right; Karl thinks a shirt that's not handmade to fit your body is "some torture stuff."
8. While you're waiting, come up with a controversial opinion about a celebrity, and take it to Twitter. (Example: Karl thinks Pippa Middleton should only show her backside, not her face.) Icon status is not for the polite. #NODISRESPECTTOBENAFFLECK
9. OMG, the show is about to start and you're not wearing a shred of Chanel. No, that knock-off you got in Times Square does not count. What about a quick manicure with their famously exlusive jade nail polish? Or a slick of Chanel's Rouge Allure Velvet lipstick, a "luminous matte color" that's ideal for autumn pouts? If all else fails and you find yourself in a Chanel desert, throw on every fake pearl you can find, and whisper a breathy thank-you to Coco for making costume jewelry so endlessly chic almost a full century later. (Or you can go full-on Monroe with a few drops of No. 5...and nothing else.)
10. It's almost time. You've got the livestream loaded? It's not working? Are you refreshing WWD and Chanel.com? Have the maids fed your cat? Before you begin worshiping at the altar of Chanel, take whatever awe and adulation you have toward the idols in your life — your favorite author, your dream job, the House of Chanel itself — and break it. Yeah, go ahead, smash your idols. Forget what came before and look to the future for inspiration. Coco Chanel did it. Karl Lagerfeld did it...to Coco's designs. Mindlessly repeating the past is so démodé. Got it?
Alright, let's see what Chanel can do.