Just How Many Languages Can Karl Lagerfeld Speak?

The London debut of two lines from Karl Lagerfeld—Karl, a lower-priced range for men and women, and his premium men’s line, Karl Lagerfeld Paris Man—was suitably held on the posh rooftop terrace of Selfridges, where his polyglot faculties were the talk of the day. The assembled style press, which included Suzy Menkes of the Herald Tribune and Susannah Frankel of the Independent, had difficulty counting all the languages he knows. “He speaks German, English, French, Spanish,” calculated Hilary Alexander of the Telegraph, “and for all I know, Russian and Mandarin.” Tim Blanks of Style.com, meanwhile, studiously mulled over his questions. “He’s been working on this perfume project with Gerhard Steidl, which seems like an interesting topic of conversation.”

Daphne Guinness doesn’t need to ask anyone any questions. People seek her attention, so we obliged, inquiring if she could remember when she first met the Chanel couturier. “Everything’s slightly blurry,” she replied, a little vague, though iridescent in a sequin tux. “It’s so long ago!” And what was she looking forward to this evening? “History and friendship. It’s hard to put into words. I’m not a word person.” “Well, you look immense.” “I look a mess?” “Immense!

Alison Mosshart’s worries extended beyond her outfit. “It feels very stressful as I don’t know how to use the old DJ decks,” confessed The Kills’ singer. “Apart from that, I’m happy to be in control of the music. That part’s fun.”

Here’s a video of the evening by the aptly named Bespoke Banter studios, in which Lagerfeld, in a surprisingly self-deprecating turn, says he’s a cartoon and other amusing things…

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