In December, following previous extravaganzas in Mumbai, Edinburgh, and Dallas, Karl Lagerfeld and the Chanel team will descend on Salzburg, Austria, for the house’s next Métiers d’Art collection. Specifically, the Schloss Leopoldskron, an 18th-century palace of the late Baroque style that sits in the shadow of the medieval Hohensalzburg Castle.
The yearly collection celebrates the artisanal craftsmanship of Chanel’s ateliers — i.e. embroidery house Maison Lesage, feather-dressers Lemarié, costume jeweler Desrues. In the alpine city, there’s certainly no shortage of history with which to flex the maison’s savoir faire. Most notably, shortly after the palace’s construction in 1736, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born in Salzburg, where he lived until the age of 25, when he left for Vienna. He and Marie Antoinette reportedly met as children, when she was Archduchess of Austria, a mere decade before becoming Queen of France. If Lagerfeld were to play with an opulent Classical theme, it doesn’t get much more opulent than that.
Salzburg is also synonymous with The Sound of Music and, while the palace does not feature in the musical, many scenes take place in its surroundings, including the lake the von Trapp children fall into when their little boat capsizes. Paralleling the events of the film, the palace was seized by the Nazis during Germany’s annexation of Austria in 1938. Upon his death three decades after the war, Coco Chanel’s lover Baron Hans Gunther von Dincklage, an SS Officer, was cremated in Salzburg. Although Lagerfeld surely won’t revisit that episode of the city’s history. Word on the street is he’ll channel Empress Elisabeth of Austria-Hungary, the beloved consort of Franz Joseph I in the late 1800s.