Pret-a-Reporter

Meet the Latest Boy(Friend) in Chanel's Life

Courtesy of Chanel
From left: Leigh Lezark, Bianca Manley, Jen Brill and Harley Viera-Newton

Bonus: He's always on time.

Lovers of all things Chanel will have an opportunity to immerse themselves in Coco’s universe this weekend as the French label launches its latest timepiece in a pop-up experience open to the public.

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Derek Blasberg, Leigh Lezark, Harley Viera-Newton and others among the magazine set turned up for a kick-off party Wednesday evening to celebrate the pop-up’s debut. Smartly timed to coincide with New York Fashion Week, the exhibit is open Friday, Sept. 11 through Sunday, Sept. 13 from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. in a gallery located at 446 W. 14th St. in the Meatpacking District. Here, fans of the brand can get acquainted with the just-launched Boy.Friend, the latest collection of timepieces that balance modernity with the Chanel iconography.

Boy.Friend is a bit sleeker than previous Chanel watches, and yet the codes of the house are much in evidence, from the octagonal shape — a reference to Paris’s Place Vendôme, which also inspired the shape of Chanel No. 5’s bottle stopper — to the name, which evokes thoughts of Boy Capel, the British aristocrat roundly agreed to be the love of Chanel’s life. Depending on size and finish, the Boy.Friend is priced from $12,500 to $27,000.

That sleeker ideal is also a reference to Chanel’s desire to combine masculine and feminine elements in her designs. "We took our first feminine watch, the Première, into a masculine territory," Nicolas Beau, Chanel’s international watch director, told Pret-a-Reporter. "This use of masculine elements for highly feminine creations is a signature design twist of Chanel. The octagonal shape, the sober, refined design and the strong lines are also part of the creative vocabulary of the House."

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Via videos and photography, the pop-up experience takes attendees through a virtual diary of the relationship between a woman and her watch — the Boy.Friend she wears on her wrist, if you will. Interactive elements include the opportunity to take selfies in the environment and to play with vending machines that dispense temporary tattoos, including one of the Boy.Friend watch so you can envision what it might look like wrapped around your wrist. Attendees are also encouraged to social-media their experiences, using the hashtag #MeetMyBoyFriend.

Previously Chanel debuted its Première watch in a pop-up experience on Paris’s Rue Cambon near the label’s legendary atelier. This New York exhibit similarly allows the brand to launch Boy.Friend in an environment that allows them to set the playful mood desired for this particular piece — or, as Beau puts it, "to offer a dive into the heart of the creative universe of the watch."

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