CHANNELING CHANEL

CHANNELING CHANEL

Our very own fashionisto Gordan Kendall, considers Chanel’s influences and what she might think of shopping in Texas… for herself, today, fifty years after her death. Her legend lives on, yet does her style translate?

MADEMOISELLE

These days, the lists go on and on about what has gone up, down, came, or went. Whether related to the economy, the recent election, the Pandemic, the price of eggs, there’s always some marker. Of course, fashion can’t miss out on any trend. The year 2021 will be no exception as it will mark the milestone of the fiftieth anniversary of the death of Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel. What more can be said about this icon and her lifetime contributions to fashion? Any follower worth her or, now his, gold buttons and “Boy” bags, knows Chanel’s story.

Convent raised, where she learned to sew, and through skill and all sorts of talents, plus good timing, and even better luck, she established not only what we know as the Chanel brand, but also brought about new ways of thinking about fashion, based on simplicity, ease, and comfort. Her contemporary, Cristbal Balenciaga, noted Chanel had very little taste. Almost all of it good, he exclaimed.

Extravagant simplicity, priced simply extravagantly, came to be le style Chanel. Of course, it was Karl Lagerfeld, of late as well, who masterfully designed Chanel clothing and accessories that kept it consistently current with times and trends. Even so, much has happened since Chanel wafted into fashion’s hereafter that cold January morning in 1971. Given the opportunity to revive her 137-year-old spirit, what might she think of her fashion legacy now? How it has withstood her absence? In the world of fashion fantasy, it’s not too difficult to imagine what it might be like to go shopping today in Texas with Chanel…for Chanel.  

ETERNALLY CHANEL

The lone figure in a beige wool suit stepped tentatively out from the Dallas mall and into The Store, the one that in her day Mr. Stanley had minded and had so feted her in September of 1957 with its very own fashion award. Then, they staged a fanciful show, a defilee of cows done up in fancy hats to the mirth of the fashionable crowd. Today, however, taking her sunglasses off and tucking them into the flap bag hung over her arm, she was here, not to party, but to peruse what had happened in her absence.

“Bon. Bon. Bon.” she exclaimed, seeing the entire wall of fragrances bearing her name. “…and right inside the front door, too. I like that. I’ve always said ‘a women should wear perfume where she wants to be kissed’…because I want to be paid when she wears mine. Oui?”

“Good morning,” cooed the approaching sales associate, “I just love that Chanel suit.”

“Non, non, Cherie, it is my suit.”

“Yes, but it is a Chanel suit, right?”  

“Don’t be ridiculous. It is the Chanel suit. Whose would I wear? That bit of upholstery Dior calls a suit?”   

“Then, perhaps, you should visit our boutique upstairs?”

Maintenant ca je dois voir. Oh, I’m in Texas now. I mean, ‘That I gotta see…Pardner.’”

Going up the escalator, she peered at the people she saw below. Where had most of their clothing gone?   

C’est quoi cette folie. What is this, craziness?” she exclaimed. “They are mostly naked, these young, not so young, people. I said it in 1968, and I must agree with myself, fashion has become nothing but une exhibition de Viande, a show of meat. But still, my sandals do look so well even with these awful blue pants cut so short on the legs with their edges fraying loose.

There was a flurry of excitement as she entered her namesake boutique on the third floor. Associates and other shoppers crowded around; all were holding some kind of metal plates in their hands. Annoying, as they occasionally emitted blinding blinks of light into her eyes. 

“Love the hat,” exclaimed one young man, who then swept it off her head and onto his own. “Post this on Insta, everyone.”  

“You’ve nailed that retro look,” screamed one young lady. “So very vintage.”

“Vintage, you say? Mais, non, this is…was…from my latest collection. No one will buy someone else’s old clothes to wear. Quelle folle. There is no fashion in old clothes, I predict, you’ll see,” she said with a knowing wink of her eye.

Then, all of a sudden, she was whisked into the changing room by the crowd, each holding some kind of garment, at once strange, but also somehow familiar, as each bore her famous “double-C, interlocking logo, the one she knew so well.

“No, go with the leggings under the shorts,” said one.

“But how about this tunic top, instead?” asked another.

“We need to fun-it-up,” declared one holding studded wrap band bracelets and a beret to replace her bowler hat. “Here… Post this on Insta.”  

“Now, I know what it was like in the cabines, my girls being pushed and prodded about,” she sighed.

After a bit of a tussle over whether to ‘just go with the high-tops and definitely not the booties,’ with the tweed-covered sneakers winning the most likes from someone or something they seemed all able to communicate with through those strange metal plates, she emerged from the changing room and stood in front of the boutique mirror.

“Here,” said the young man, still wearing her hat, “You need this,” and with a flourish, he belted a large, long zippered pouch around her middle, her Chanel name, in all caps, boldly displayed across her very own Chanel derriere. “Quick. Post it on Insta.” 

“What’s this? A costume pour le sport?” she asked into the mirror. “Ah, but these what you call ‘sneeek-eures,’ they are comfortable. Massaro’s slingbacks can cut so. Even if I did design them for him.”

BYE, BEIGE

Gone was the beige suit. Instead, she stood in red and black shorts worn over black patterned leggings, surprisingly easy to get used to for someone so used to wearing skirts. So much better able to move about in. A sleek sweater set, one red beneath a red and gold plaid, replaced the blouse and jacket. The enormous black beret sat at a jaunty angle on her head.  

“Totally love the fanny pack,” said one. “It makes it casual…post it on Insta.”

Un ‘fanny-paque’? And what are these dreadful things you keep holding up into my face?” she asked.

“Oh, we’ve so got to get you on Insta, Guurl,” they all said.

“This ‘Insta’ what is it?” Chanel was perplexed; she didn’t like to be perplexed.

“Look,” said one showing her the device, “You can post your picture on it. Get followers, even buy stuff.”

“Indeed” Chanel said, as she turned the metal plate, now alive with images appearing on its surface, in her hand.

“You mean it can really be a phone and a camera at the same time? These ‘followers.’ Why would anyone want to follow me? I can buy things, Non? With this ‘Insta’ character?”   

The crowd gathered around Chanel, each posing with her, moving her this way and that to “get the right look” All around, other shoppers watched the group, taking their own pictures at what must surely be a celerity in the store. The young man handed back her hat and clothes, folded into a glossy black carrier bag for the trip back.

“How would you like to pay for these?” asked the associate.

“Oh, of course, just how you say ‘post it on my ‘Insta’?” Chanel said. She waved a goodbye and headed over in the time she had left to see what that Christian Dior had once again decreed what everyone, except she, should wear.

Gallery

SUNNY DISPOSITION

SUNNY DISPOSITION

When it comes to warmer weather, look no further for inspiration of the best accessories for the season, according to stylish Rank & Style CEO Jamie Chandlee.

HELLO, SUNSHINE

This two-in-one, high-potency vitamin C and SPF 40 serum visibly brightens skin and targets the two – primary causes of dark spots: UV and blue light. So, get out there and enjoy nature while avoiding dark spots, fine lines, wrinkles, and dullness. $46. At Sephora.com.

CANDLE
PAN

CHICEST CHAPEAU

No matter where you go this spring and summer, you’ll likely want to don a hat for both stylish and practical reasons. Try this Dandy white broad-brimmed, hand-woven Panama straw fedora from Paja Toquilla with three contrasting striped grosgrain ribbons. The best part? It offers UPF 50 protection. $220. At FreyaBrand.com.

FLORAL, MEET FESTIVE

The Riders Buckle Bandeau Bikini in mango floral is from the Zimmermann Resort 2021 Collection. This shiny Italian Lycra bikini set features a bandeau top with a center front buckle and V-cut bottom. Come on, everybody into the pool. $275. At ZimmermannWear.com

French Oil
EYE MASK KEEP BOX IN

BACK TO YOUR FUTURE

The wildly popular shoe of the 80s, the Jellies, have been reincarnated as a fun spring staple. Easy yet elevated, these rose Alexandre Birman sandals are crafted from rubber in a lovely pink hue and feature decorative knots on minimally strappy uppers. $295. At Shopbop.com.

TIE ONE ON

Who wouldn’t be fit to be ‘tide’ to wear these gorgeous, gold-plated, and mother-of-pearl Ischia earrings designed in homage to the namesake Italian island? With beige woven discs and hand-sewn clusters of assorted freshwater pearls, these are the perfect choice from pool to dinner. $275. At LizzieFortunato.com.

BOOK
CHARGER

HOW TO BE MULTI-FACETED

This multipurpose color for cheeks, lips, and lids has a creamy texture formulated with soothing ingredients that simply melt into the skin. They work in concert to balance moisture, infusing skin with a naturally effervescent flush of buildable color. $48. At Westman-Atelier.com.

DRESS THE PART

While on holiday, comfort is key, and so is carefree packing. The solution is this lightweight one piece of non-stretch linen weave that has a cutout waist with inset elastic trim. The ruched ring at the center, crew neck, and short sleeves will keep you feeling cool. $245. At Shopbop.com.

PJS NEW
your birthday can be any day

THAT ETERNAL GLOW

The Isle of Paradise Hyglo Hyaluronic Self-Tan Face Serum is formulated for daily use to leave skin with a luminous finish. Just apply four to 12 drops directly to the face for a deeper tan. $32. At Sephora.com.

SPANISH AND SLEEK

The new signature bag from Loewe’s Balloon collection draws on the house’s longstanding expertise in leatherwork. This summery iteration has been handcrafted in its native Spain from woven raffia left unlined for a soft silhouette and completed with a structured calfskin leather base. $2350. At ModaOperandi.com.

GLOSSIER
your birthday can be any day

EMBRACE THE CHILL

Savoring the outdoors has never been comfier than with the Plage sweater. This oversize v-neck cotton-blend sweater with tonal stripes is the perfect companion for any of your fresh air pursuits. $295. At LaLigneNYC.com

AT HOME ON THE RANGE

AT HOME ON THE RANGE

It’s not every day that a fine photographer gets a career retrospective. Now, Janell Kleberg’s most beloved photographs are on display at the Witte Museum in San Antonio so that the world can enjoy Kleberg’s point of view of the Texas ranch scene.

 

By Lance Avery Morgan

Photography by Janell Kleberg

 

“The winter fog cloaks the land and lays down a blanket of refreshing dew on everything, even during the dry years,” recalled Janell Kleberg about one of her photographs taken on the King Ranch. “A place where laughter and stories are shared at the end of a day with the satisfaction of a job well done. The morning feels fresh, the grass is grazed down around the roundup ground, and the tiny purple phlox is visible in the sandy soil and the bare spots between clumps of bluestem.”

 

That sort of bird’s eye view is what Kleberg offers to the viewer of her photographs from her three-decades-long career. She captures the spirit of the land and those who work it, with the same gusto she approaches life. In the exhibit, Live the West: Photographs by Janell Kleberg, currently on display at San Antonio’s Witte Museum, an audio component with a story about each photograph is prominently featured to capture the fleeting moments of strength, beauty, and grace of the annual roundup on King Ranch from the 1970s to the 2000s.  

 

“Helen Kleberg Groves has wanted this exhibit at the Witte Museum for more than a decade,” said Kleberg. “I carried a camera during the years we worked cattle and horses to capture the life and the era she loved. It was a remarkable time and place to remember, and Helenita will be so pleased,” she continued. The Witte Museum is dedicated to telling the stories of Texas from prehistory to the present. The permanent collection features historical artifacts photographs, art, textiles, dinosaur bones, cave drawings, and wildlife dioramas, all from Texas. With this exhibit, the museum visitor is transported through the lens of photographer and conservation ambassador Janell Kleberg to the dusty coastal savanna in the sweltering heat of August during the time when the cattle grazing over thousands of acres are corralled. It’s where horse and rider work together as the calf crop is harvested, the dry cows are culled, and the results of years of selective breeding are judged.

 

“You will see the smile on Buster’s face and the relaxed seat he has in the saddle, despite the impending duel with a seriously wild Santa Gertrudis cow,” shares Kleberg about one shoot on the range. Kleberg revealed further insight into the story behind the excerpts from Janell Kleberg’s letters to her college friend, Julianna Hawn Holt. “Those cattle were straight out of the brush, some who had avoided being gathered for years, and the dry cows would hook a horse at every pass in the herd. It was simply the best day ever. I am so glad to share it with you, and I think of you each time I find an image such as this. I know that you understand what it means and how this time will never come again. What luck to be there on that day.”

 

What luck to have Janell Kleberg’s talents to accompany the largess of generous support by Julianna Hawn Holt, the Caesar Kleberg Foundation for Wildlife Conservation, and the Caesar Kleberg Wildlife Research Institute, in collaboration with the Witte Museum to create this one-of-a-kind exhibit. These powerful partnerships work with the land and the resources that come from it, through science and education with and for future generations. “Janell Kleberg’s photographs illustrate the dignity of work on what we call the wild and vivid land of South Texas, said the Witte’s President and CEO Marise McDermott. “We are so pleased to host this extraordinary exhibition of Janell’s photographic witness to the King Ranch.”

 

Live the West appears at the Witte Museum through June 6 in the Russell Hill Rogers Texas Art Gallery and is included with museum admission. For more information, visit WitteMuseum.org.

SHINING THE LIGHT

SHINING THE LIGHT

With the Pantone colors of the year, glamorous Ultimate Gray, and chic Illuminating Yellow, we welcome this marriage of a practical, rock-solid gray with a warm and optimistic yellow. They both speak to the resilience, optimism, and hope that our world needs as we reset and renew with the start of 2021, according to our beauty expert, Ana Bribiesca Hoff.

AUGUSTINE BADER

BLOWOUT DRAMA

Developed in partnership with Drybar, the It Cosmetics Lash Blow Out mascara brings the benefits of a top hair salon blowout to your lashes, giving an instant lift for blowout volume that lasts.

$25. At Sephora.com.

BRIGHT & CHEERFUL

This multipurpose color concealer for face, eyes, and lips will illuminate your complexion for a vibrant look. Wrinkles are faded, pores reduced, and lips feel extra smooth! Try Dior Fix It 2-in-1 Prime & Color Correct in Yellow.

$36. At Neiman Marcus.com.

STILA
elixir serum

STRONG, MEET SHINY

Drybar’s Sake Bomb is a luxurious shampoo and conditioner that cleanses and hydrates dry strands, leaving them soft, strong and shiny. Watercress extract strengthens and softens hair while keratin reinforces and prevents damage. Sake Bomb duo.

$26 each. At Nordstrom.com.

POWDERED WITH SUNSHINE

A unique pale yellow loose powder that is 100% oil-free, oil-absorbing, and infused with vitamin E, sets and protects the foundation for a smooth, flawless finish. Bobbi Brown Loose Powder, Sheer Finish in Pale Yellow.

$44. At BergdorfGoodman.com.  

GUERLIAN EYE
KOSAS EYESHADOW

ULTIMATE ILLUMINATION

This decadent, rich creme is enriched with the illuminating molecule, Lumidose, which goes beyond nourishing skin with deep moisture to reveal the extraordinary beauty of your eyes. La Prairie White Caviar Eye Extraordinaire.

$550. At NeimanMarcus.com.

BOTTLED SUNNY DAY

Vitamin C from pure pineapple juice, pure ascorbic acid, and stable 3-O ethyl ascorbic acid combine their powers to create a lightweight, brightening serum that targets problem areas. Glow Recipe Pineapple Vitamin C Serum.

$49. At Sephora.com.  

CHRISTIAN LABOUTIN
URBAN DECAY

SILVER LINING

Let 2021’s resilient gray hue serve as a reminder that every situation has a silver lining. Embrace its strength by swapping your classic black eyeliner for an Ultimate Gray for equal drama. Laura Mercier Longwear Crème Eye Pencil in Slate.

$25. At NeimanMarcus.com.

BURSTS OF LIGHT

Extraordinary yellow light, pure as sunlight, is captured in John Masters roll-on aromatherapy scents. Not only are the fragrances fabulous, but they also help to balance, de-stress and uplift. Choose from Balance and Harmony scents.

$34. At JohnMasters.com.

GIVENCHY
TOM FORD

RESILIENT SHINE

For luminous locks, try Miriam Quevedo’s Platinum & Diamonds Luxurious Drops, an exquisite finishing spray with platinum and diamond powder. It revitalizes hair for magnificent volume and superb shine while its exotic extracts protect against aging.

$60. At NeimanMarcus.com.

UPLIFTINGLY BRIGHT

How about applying a bright and vivid yellow liquid eyeshadow all over your eyelids for a graphic eye look? Huda Beauty Matte & Metal Melted Double Ended Liquid Eyeshadow in Limelight.

$25. At Sephora.com.

GIVENCHY
TOM FORD

NAILING IT

OPI’s take on 2021’s gray is the perfect steely gray hue that channels composure, steadiness, and resilience. The yellow shade captures the optimism of a sunshine-filled day. OPI Suzi Talks with Her Hands and Don’t Tell a Sol. each 

$13 each. At OPI.com.

ONWARD TO THE COOL

ONWARD TO THE COOL

As we continue with the new reality in 2021, things are happening again, both near and far as well. Join our culture-seeking editor Lance Avery Morgan as he recommends some new bright spots to know and love this very moment.

Courtesy of Saks Fifth Avenue

LISTEN IN, SKIN

We love that SkinLab, the new-to-market skincare concept developed by the luxe brand SkinCeuticals, is now officially open in Houston. For fans of the SkinCeuticals product line, SkinLab is a one-stop-shop that opened in partnership with Houston plastic surgeon Dr. Forrest Roth–it is the third to open in the country, with the first two being in Napa Valley and Connecticut. At WestAvePlasticSurgery.com.

RANCH STYLE MEANS

RancH2O, founded by native Texan Amelia Lettieri, is the ready-to-drink canned cocktail brand that delivers the kick of real spirits and a refreshingly smooth taste with just the pop of a tab. This is not another hard seltzer…RancH2O is real liquor, perfectly mixed in flavors like Ranch Water, Classic Marg, Vodka, and a Gin Fizz. The four-pack is $13.99. Available at major liquor stores and RancH20Spirits.com.

Courtesy of Haute Hostess
Courtesy of Virgin Dallas

BURNING SO BRIGHT

Dirty Bartender candles have teamed with DIFFA Dallas, inspired by its thirty years of service. The delectable scents, aptly named House of DIFFA, Yacht Bar, and Cocktail Garden, will transform any mood and space. Plus, they burn for 40 hours. Each are $34. At DirtyBartender.com.

OH, BABY

Mila & Me, the new Latina-owned, hand-dyed loungewear brand for both mothers and children, was conceived during COVID-19 by Austinite Melissa Dieck Thaxton. She believes in donating a portion of the company’s proceeds to organizations in need. “We hope our pieces brighten your day, bring comfort to your life, and peace that you are helping those in need,” shares Thaxton. Prices vary. At MilaAndMe.shop.

Courtesy of Discovery Green

MORE…

Courtesy of Restore 180

FAVORITE FAIRYTALE RE-DUX

Cinderella, the upcoming American musical romantic comedy, has been updated for today’s modern audience. Starring Camila Cabello, Idina Menzel, and Billy Porter, the re-boot of the children’s classic promises to be one for the ages. Debuts February 5.

LOVE’S HOLIDAY

LOVE’S HOLIDAY

Love is always in the air, and especially on its special day in February. Valentine’s Day is something to look forward to this year, according to our luxe lifestyle arbiter Rank & Style CEO Jamie Chandlee, with her Top 10 recommendations… with a few things for him, too.

ROBE

HERE, THESE ARE FOR YOU

Pink roses presented in a suede box? Yes, please. This heart-shaped box is such a beautiful arrangement to show that special someone how far your love extends. $550. At VenusEtFleur.com.

SAVE THE DATE

Try these 18K gold slider bangles to honor a special moment in your life to make it completely one-of-a-kind...and you can mix and match, adding more to make stackable. In white, yellow, or rose gold, and black Rhodium. Starting at $2800. At StephanieGottleb.com.

CANDLE
PAN

LIGHT UP THE NIGHT

Handcrafted in the French Alps, the Mad et Len’s scented candle captures the evocative scents of nature that we all love. Contained in a hand-forged blackened steel canister, Terre Noire has a deep earthy complexity reminiscent of the mystery of the French forest–aged oak and rich soil. $100. At CandleDelirium.com.

WHAT A WHIRL

The Bottega Veneta three-dimensional Whirl clutch in lollipop pink is this spring’s newest conversation piece. Reminiscent of a heart, this Napa leather bag will make even the most basic outfit pop when paired with it. $1980. At BottegaVeneta.com.

French Oil
EYE MASK KEEP BOX IN

FEEL THE WORLD FADE AWAY

The mini massager is your pocket-sized partner, for him or her, giving the Theragun quality muscle treatment with unparalleled portability. Compact but powerful, this is the most agile massage device that goes wherever you go. $199. At Theragun.com.

SOAK SOFTLY

Create a relaxing, spa-like experience in the comfort of your own home with French Girl Organics’ Rose Sea Soak. The soothing formula is made with Epsom salts to loosen muscles and draw out toxins, while Pink Himalayan Salts help relieve stress. Divine. $22. At NetAPorter.com.

BOOK
CHARGER

SKY HIGH GOALS

Made in Italy from supple fuchsia suede with flattering pointed toes, Christian Louboutin’s Rabakate pumps are embellished with delicate bows above the slim stiletto heels. Be sure to keep the hem of your dress or pants short enough to showcase this beautiful feminine detail. $995. At NetAPorter.com.

HOW SWEET OF YOU

Texas-based confectioner-to-the-stars Maggie Louise of Maggie Louise Confections is the go-to favorite of the Jet Set. Why not celebrate love with decadent chocolates inspired by a day of sweet matrimony with scrumptious works of art like these? Prices vary. At MaggieLouiseConfections.com.

PJS NEW
your birthday can be any day

THE NEW CLARITY

He’ll love this minimalist Transparent Speaker engineered to work seamlessly with existing virtual assistants and setups. Built for crisp, balanced, full-bodied sound, it’s made from white aluminum and tempered glass and streams with Bluetooth. $500.  At MrPorter.com.

SWEATER WEATHER

He’ll look sharp in this pinkish cotton-cashmere blend crew neck sweater with a pocket, don’t you think? From Austin-based Criquet Shirts. $150. At CriquetShirts.com.

GLOSSIER