Chanel Resort 2013

If you crossed Marie Antoinette with an early-career Debbie Harry, you’d end up with one pissed-off pastel punk rocker—or Chanel’s resort 2013 show.

Shown yesterday in the gardens of Versailles, Karl Lagerfeld’s vision proved to be one of his more provocative in recent seasons. When you’re talking about a man who has shipped in actual icebergs for a runway set, that’s saying a lot.

This time around the clothes did all the talking as models sporting helmet haircuts, some with long bow-accented ponytails, strutted around the Palace’s spouting fountains in an eye-popping array of sugar-hued denim, tweed and ruffled lace. And though some ensembles almost veered into period costume territory, this was quickly tempered by tough-girl accessories such as platform creepers that accompanied most looks, statement cuff jewelry and cross-slung bags as M.I.A. pumped through the speakers.

As the Kaiser later said of the show, this was “Coco rock, not Rococo.” That was made quite clear as the girls sauntered along, hands shoved in pockets with double-C beauty marks, reminding us of that original good girl gone bad.

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