Sunday, May 17, 2015

A Colorful Trip To Chanel

Chanel Gripoix glass butterfly pin
When I think of Chanel I think of tweeds, pearls, Maltese crosses, and Gripoix glass beads.  I don't think of rainbows, psychedelic colors or anything bohemian.  I understand that 20 somethings are more into that and they can get away with it, but I like when Chanel sticks to the classics.  So, when I saw elements of the Spring-Summer 2015 ready-to-wear collection, with what looks like abstract watercolors, I thought the patterns were pretty, but I was not a fan of it to actually wear. The tall boots were especially just silly in my opinion.  The kind of woman who has a job that allows her to afford such a purchase, say a 50 year old attorney or 40 year old investment banker, isn't going to wear them. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE color, and I loved the green tweed Chanel used a couple of years ago, but it still had that classic Chanel look.  And, I adore, and lust after, some of the brightly colored 2.55/flap bags, but again the bags are still the classic shape. That being said, these collections that deviate from the norm, can be more collectible in the long run, if not wearable in the short term.  After all, a black 2.55 bag is forever, but there are a lot of them.  A 'Rainbow Brite' flap bag isn't going to be made after this season so if you're a collector that's what you want.

The other day I was walking up and down Madison Avenue visiting different stores doing research for an article I'm writing about jewelry and I passed the Chanel boutique.  I had some time between other store appointments so I decided to go in and look around.  I caught some mother-daughter drama going on as a mom was buying a bag for her lucky daughter who was probably around college age. The daughter was trying to decide between a classic large 2.55 in a beautiful shade of blue and some ugly olive green hippie bag that was awful (sorry Chanel, but it was).  The mother was trying to get her to buy the classic and the daughter was getting cranky.  The daughter was asking every salesperson in the store which one she should get and she even had a friend stop in to ask her advice. Everyone told her to get the 2.55, except her friend who said "it depends what you're going to use it for."  I suppose if you're planning a trip to 1967 the hobo would come in handy, but in any other circumstance you grab the 2.55.  Thankfully the daughter chose the classic 2.55 that she will use for a lifetime vs the hobo style bag that will end up in the back of her closet in a year.   The whole scene was kind of fun to watch and reminded me of shopping with my mother, except that my mother didn't take me to Chanel to shop.   While I was watching this play out I was looking in the display cases and two pieces of jewelry caught my eye:  a diamond shaped pearl ring that had an Indian look and a Gripoix glass rainbow colored butterfly pin.  The ring was very pretty, but the butterfly's wings looked like beautiful stained glass windows and the right way to showcase rainbow colors.  It's a perfect piece of this colorful collection that I can enjoy, because it's also a classic butterfly with a traditional Chanel pearl body.  And, of course, I'll wear it on a solid colored, traditional blazer.

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