Chanel’s Starry Starry Night In Los Angeles

Fashion and film collided as the French brand brought its cinematic cruise collection to Paramount Studios, with Hollywood’s finest getting a front-row seat



A light installation in the backlot greeted guests.


A basketball court, replete with scoreboards declaring each model by name, smack in the middle of Paramount Studios, was the chosen setting for Chanel’s latest cruise show. As the brand sashayed into the backlot of L.A.’s historic home of moviemaking, it presented a collection hitherto unseen at the unerringly sophisticated French house founded in 1910. Wistful, whimsical, and yet unmistakably Chanel, here was a spectacle inspired by the city of stars down to every last stitch.

Food trucks serving sushi, pizza, and tacos set the tone, greeting indomitable international editors, and megawatt movie stars and their entourages, as roller-skaters ran rings around giant illuminated letters spelling out CHANEL and RUE CAMBON (the home of its Parisian flagship). From the get-go it was clear that the night was as much about fun and frivolity as it was high fashion.

The show was lighter than usual on twinsets and little black dresses: Chanel creative director Virginie Viard drew on 100 years of Hollywood history, injecting cinematic elegance, California cool, and a dash of kitsch into a technicolor collection as joyous as it was free-spirited, capturing the essence of West Coast style today.


Chanel and Hollywood go way back — almost 100 years, in fact


Models walk the basketball court turned catwalk at Paramount Studios.


References spanned the decades like the very best movie collections. Evening silhouettes straight out of the ‘20s and ‘30s sat alongside shimmering tracksuits borrowed from the ‘90s; sneakers, crop tops, and swimsuits paid homage to the timeless boardwalks of Venice and the surf breaks of Malibu; and as hot pants sat high on the thigh, pearl-adorned leg warmers and swishy coverups completed the 71 winter sun looks. Palette-wise, the full spectrum of a Santa Monica sunset was covered with dreamy tangerines, dusky mauves, and glimmering golds — not to mention a prevalence of Barbie pink.

Naturally the film’s star (and longtime Chanel ambassador), Margot Robbie, had the best front-row seat in the house, insouciantly sporting flared denim, a bra top, a chain bolero, and a leather jacket. She was joined by Chanel-clad sirens of film and TV including Kristen Stewart, Tracee Ellis Ross, Issa Rae, Marion Cotillard, Chloë Sevigny, and Riley Keough, as well as former C cover girls Margaret Qualley, Sofia Coppola, and Elle Fanning. In the audience for a change, they gazed upon a big-screen backdrop of models exercising as if on Venice’s Muscle Beach — a film created by fashion’s favorite husband-and-wife team, Inez and Vinoodh.

Post-show the court became a concert stage, with Nile Rodgers introducing Snoop Dogg, who performed some of his greatest hits, including “Drop It Like It’s Hot” and “Beautiful,” while an army of models, fresh off the catwalk, let their hair down in unison. Snoop, in turn, invited fellow Angeleno and fashion darling Anderson .Paak to perform “Smokin Out the Window,” much to the delight of the crowd.


Here was a spectacle inspired by the city of stars down to every last stitch



Chanel and Hollywood go way back — almost 100 years, in fact, when Samuel Goldwyn invited Mme Chanel to come to Hollywood to design wardrobes for his talking pictures back in 1931. Each year, Chanel throws a pre-Oscars party to end them all, and when the brand showed a resort collection in Los Angeles in 2007, the late and long-serving creative director Karl Lagerfeld held court over the Barker Hangar in the Santa Monica airport (now home to Frieze LA) as his models deplaned from actual jets — a spectacle that would set in motion some incredibly bold set designs for his future shows at the Grand Palais in Paris.

Timed in tandem with the opening of the French house’s new Rodeo Drive boutique — its biggest in the U.S., with 30,000 sq. ft. of ready-to-wear and accessories and haute joaillerie worthy of the most crimson of carpets — the pageant puts Los Angeles right at the center of the world fashion map. Long may it stay there.


A fleet of taco trucks served pizza and sushi.



Feature image: Models walk the basketball court turned catwalk at Paramount Studios.


This story originally appeared in the Fall 2023 issue of C Magazine.

Discover more STYLE news.


See the story in our digital edition

Receive Updates

No spam guarantee.

Stay Up To Date

Subscribe to our weekly emails for the hottest openings, latest parties and in-depth interviews with the people putting California Style on the map.