No matter the season, a Chanel presentation always brings out an A-list crowd—but the house’s couture show in Paris tends to be particularly star-studded. Case in point: Earlier this week, designer Virginie Viard debuted her fall 2023 couture collection in the City of Light, and the front row was filled with celebrities such as director Sofia Coppola, actor Margaret Qualley, and singer Vanessa Paradis. Oscar-winning actor Lupita Nyong’o was also in attendance for the affair, and the star let Vogue follow along as she got ready for the big show day. “This trip has been inspiring,” she says. “I have had a lovely time witnessing the work that goes into every detail, meeting other guests, and viewing the new collection in the center of fashion—Paris!”
Of course, this wasn’t Nyong’o’s first time in Paris; she’s a fashion week veteran. “I have visited the city a handful of times before,” Nyong’o says, “with a standout trip being when I shot my second Vogue cover at different iconic locations across the city. I will never forget it!” Even so, the star says that touching down in the city for couture is an experience unlike any other. Taking in Chanel’s latest assortment of elegant tweeds, Nyong’o was struck by Viard’s modern approach to the French fashion house’s classic codes. “I particularly enjoyed the tension between the weight of wools, tweeds, and leather that were coupled with the lightness and effervescence of silk chiffons and lace,” says Nyong’o. “I also loved the combination of the ’70s-inspired pieces, mixed in with classic Chanel silhouettes and contemporary cuts and shapes.”
For her own look as a VIP guest, Nyong’o landed on a lilac tweed button-up vest and micro shorts from Chanel’s resort collection, paired with the perfect T-strap pumps. “I felt cute and playful—like a live doll,” says Nyong’o. “[My makeup artist] Nick Barose and I joked that my look was perfect for Barbie season. Purple also used to be my favorite color as a child, so it reminded me of those precious times when all I had to do was play with dolls and go to bed on time!” Later, she added in a glittery burgundy, pink, and yellow cashmere sweater, loving the mix of casual and dressy pieces. “It made me feel free,” says Nyong’o. “I was inspired to run carefree through the streets of Paris, but I settled for running through the hotel hallways and down the runway instead!”
Along with seeing the show, Nyong’o also had the opportunity to pay a visit to the Galerie du 19M in Paris. “It’s where Chanel’s métiers d’art ateliers are,” says Nyong’o. “I was blown away by the painstaking precision of the craft that goes into each piece, and even got a chance to try my hand at some of the techniques!” After playing fashion artisan for a day, however, Nyong’o returned to her regularly scheduled programming. “It’s back to work for me,” she says of her summer plans. “I have a lot of exciting projects on the horizon that I can’t wait to share with everyone.”
Below, an exclusive look at Nyong’o’s Chanel show day.
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