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Watch: Chanel stages first fashion show under new designer

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New creative chief Virginie Viard joined Chanel in 1987
New creative chief Virginie Viard joined Chanel in 1987 -
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Chanel has held its first fashion show under its new creative director since the death of its legendary designer Karl Lagerfeld, presenting its cruise collection on Friday at Paris's Grand Palais.

Tribute was paid to "Kaiser Karl" in the form of his trademark starched white collars among the sea of floaty, feminine dresses that marked the first Chanel collection by a female artistic director since Coco Chanel herself.

The new creative chief Virginie Viard joined Chanel in 1987 and worked closely with Lagerfeld until his death in February, aged 85. She took her first post-show bow alongside Lagerfeld a year ago, cementing her role as his right-hand woman.

Viard, who started in embroidery before going on to head Chanel's creative studio, faces the challenge of retaining the character and style that made Chanel under Lagerfeld so distinctive while carving out her own niche.

Unlike her friend and mentor, Viard has so far shown a preference for discretion rather than the spotlight. Many followers of the brand caught their first glimpse of her in March, when she stepped out to greet the catwalk crowd after Lagerfeld's last collection was presented posthumously.

Several sources had previously told Reuters Viard's appointment was transitional and that another successor could yet be announced at the iconic label.