2017 End of the Year Style Awards: Designer of the Year

This year I tagged 196 different brands as nominees for Best Dressed of the Year, but before I share that list tomorrow I have to hand out my Designer of the Year award. This award isn’t based as much on opinion as others. Every time I put a look in my Best Dressed archive I update a spreadsheet with lists of designers. At the end of the year when I am putting these awards together I look at the brand that has the most best dressed nominated looks and they take home this award. In the past I have given this award to Gucci, Dior, Elie Saab, and Versace. This year we add another brand to those ranks. I was really surprised by who ended up on the top of my spreadsheet. I do love Chanel, but I was surprised that I put 55 looks from the brand in my best looks of the year file especially when considering when I think of Chanel I think of couture and they came in sixth in the couture of the year list. The closest competition in this category was Elie Saab who came in with 47 looks this year. I adore Kaiser Karl and after several seasons of feeling like Chanel was extremely mundane all of his collections this year have been amazing and worn extremely well by his loyal ranks of friends, he even had a major menswear moment this year when Pharrell pulled a Spring 2009 tuxedo out of the archive to wear for the Oscars this year. Blake Lively gave a major moment captured on her way to a movie premiere on the sidewalks of NYC wearing a vintage Chanel Couture gown and probably the most surprising moment was when Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge donned a Chanel tweed coat dress while she was on a royal tour stop in Paris. As expected Chanel was featured on every major red carpet this year, but it was the smaller events and appearances that really pushed the brand over the top. From Anna Wintour wearing a pale pink couture coat dress to her Dame Commander Investiture ceremony this year (which she paired with a very rare big smile) to Kendall Jenner making a late night talk show appearance wearing a vintage Chanel tweed mini suit these are the moments that I loved to see and they just elevated appearances that could have been seen as mundane to real fashion moments. Cheers to a great year Karl! Keep it up in 2018!

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