The fashion industry has come to expect a spectacle during the finale of Chanel Haute Couture shows, with the late Karl Lagerfeld sending a supermodel (or two) down the runway in extravagant wedding gowns year after year — and Tuesday’s Spring/Summer 2021 show was no different.
During the intimate Paris Fashion Week event, Virginie Viard — who took over as creative director of Chanel after Lagerfeld died in 2019 — introduced this year’s bride (Lola Nicon) on a majestic white horse.
The model donned a satin wedding gown embroidered with rhinestone-and-pearl butterflies and a tulle veil as she rode side-saddle down the runway accompanied by a horse trainer.
Speaking with Vogue, Viard said the look was, “a little bit like something seen in the old pictures—ivory satin, embroidery, and a big veil, not quite 1920s, but that atmosphere.”
“Riding side-saddle on a horse, ‘la mariée’ appeared in an ecru satin crêpe wedding dress from the CHANEL Spring-Summer 2021 Haute Couture collection, embroidered by Lesage with rhinestone-and-pearl butterflies,” Chanel wrote on Instagram alongside a video of the magical moment.
After the show, Nicon posted a photo of the horse and thanked “everyone” for making Viard’s vision come to life in the caption.
Viard carried the bridal theme throughout the collection, telling Vogue that the aesthetic was, “more bohemian style—more a wedding or a family celebration in a village than at the Ritz!” The line featured whimsical designs, with lace, ruffles and plenty of full tulle skirts.
“I knew we couldn’t organize a big show, that we would have to invent something else, so I came up with the idea of a small cortege that would come down the stairs of the Grand Palais and pass beneath arches of flowers,” the designer told Marie Claire UK.
And with only a select few brand ambassadors including Penélope Cruz, Marion Cotillard, Vanessa Paradise and daughter Lily-Rose Depp in attendance due to the coronavirus pandemic, Viard said it was “like a family celebration, a wedding…”