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After 10 Years as a Chanel Ambassador, Caroline de Maigret Shares Her Go-to Products

The French style muse also shares her thoughts on the "different emotion" Virginie Viard brings to the house.
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The most recent Chanel collections have all been hits to brand ambassador, frequent model and perennial muse Caroline de Maigret.

Obviously, there's the new direction the luxury fashion house has taken under Virginie Viard, who worked at the company for 30 years (and quite closely with her predecessor, Karl Lagerfeld). But it goes deeper than just having a different person — and a woman — at the helm.

"It's a different emotion," de Maigret tells me in Miami, where Chanel had just re-staged its Cruise 2023 collection to an audience of clients, VIPs, press and friends of the Maison, like herself. "I find it very feminine. The silhouettes have changed. The proportions have changed. There's a sexiness that I love, but still very smart and elegant. I think Virginie loves movement — it was interesting because there was a lot of wind [at the Replica show], and the clothes were taking their whole interest of going on holiday. Some of the dresses were taking the wind, like, 'Yeah. I want to be that drama queen.' It's so cool."

The Spring 2023 ready-to-wear was her favorite, she says: "There's something very alive in [Viard's] work. I'm wearing it a lot, so I feel the difference."

De Maigret had already seen Cruise at the Monte Carlo debut back in May. But seeing it again, this time on Miami Beach, "worked really well," she says. "It was sporty, it was fun, it was fresh — that's how I see Miami. We had the chance of having the sea behind… It was different from Monaco because that was carrying the history of Chanel: Gabrielle Chanel used to go there, Karl Lagerfeld used to live there. Here, it was just very fresh."

She's been to her fair share of Chanel shows since becoming a brand ambassador in 2013 (and walking its runway before that). What she appreciates about the spectacle is how it's not really about a trend, but more about a feeling.

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"I always feel that poetry when I see a Chanel show," she says. "There's something always a bit intellectual. It's really a special house because there's a kindness, a faithfulness in the house that I believe I can find watching the clothes. There's something very respectful of the whole work, the respect they have for the people working for the house."

When she sees something on a Chanel runway, de Maigret explains, she knows it's something "extraordinary" and "made to last forever."

"When you buy a piece of Chanel, you have it for life." she says. "You'll pass it to your children."

De Maigret knows this intimately: One of her favorite pieces in what I can only imagine is an extensive personal Chanel archive is a little black tweed jacket that Lagerfeld designed for her, which she still wears: "It works 24 hours — I wear it with jeans, I wear it with a nightgown. Either it makes it more elegant or it pulls it down."

For a weekend in Miami, though, she stuck with classics: white trousers (which she wore to the show), tank tops, T-shirts. It's all about "pieces that are really good to mix and match" — much like what we might see in a Cruise collection. Then, there's the trifecta of Chanel beauty products she knows she can depend on.

"I always take the mascara — I like the Revolution one; it's a bit heavy, but I like it thick because I like to attract people to my eyes. The foundation is so thin; it's a great cover, and it takes the light really well. And I love the eyeliner, because I'm not a very good makeup artist, and it's really easy. I like to do a little cateye — especially in Miami. It's kind of glamorous."

Disclosure: Chanel paid for Fashionista's travel and accommodations to attend the Cruise 2023 Replica show.

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