Fendi’s latest runway show, held at Milan Fashion Week, was rather a special one. It showed the last collection Karl Lagerfeld created for the house before his death earlier this week.
The atmosphere was sombre. On seats, there were cards with an intertwined F and heart, alongside Karl’s signature, on the wall behind the catwalk, a giant ‘love, karl’ in the maestro’s handwriting. After the finale, Silvia Fendi took a brief bow, to David Bowie’s Heroes – an artist who Karl loved.
A film dedicated to Karl was shown after Gigi Hadid closed the show, starting with the message ’54 years together’, a reference to ‘fashion’s longest love story’, as Silvia Fendi put it. It showed him being asked to sketch himself as he was when he first started at Fendi.
He replies playfully with one of his trademark memorable quotes, ‘Well that’s prehistoric. You know, in the Sixties, we didn’t hold back.’
As for the collection, it would be fitting to say it was the perfect homage to the genius, who oversaw every last detail before bowing out.
The show notes read, ‘The Fendi women’s autumn/winter 2019 collection is the final collection designed by Karl Lagerfeld, representing a lifetime of dedication and creation from 1965 until today. In his perpetual search for beauty and innovation, Karl’s commitment to his craft never waned.’
Karl was everywhere from the classic logo he designed for the house to the starched white collars, sharp tailoring and of course the ponytails the models wore. A stunning collection that will no doubt be worn like a badge of honour by his fans.
There has been no word yet from Fendi as to who will succeed Karl (Chanel have confirmed his successor already), but there is wide speculation it could be Silvia.
Meanwhile, Lagerfeld’s final collection for Chanel is due to be shown during Paris Fashion Week on Tuesday 5 March.