Karl Lagerfeld and Pharrell Williams attend the Chanel show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Fall/Winter 2017/2018 on March 7, 2017, in Paris. (Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images)

Music producer Pharrell Williams’ affection for classic French couture house Chanel has been evident for some time. Not only has he been rocking Chanel necklaces for years (remade with real gemstones), but he also appeared in a short film for Chanel and has walked the runway in Paris for the brand.

His latest exploit is to be the first man to appear in a handbag campaign for the storied fashion house. In the April 3 ads, Pharrell sports the crocodile version of Chanel’s new Gabrielle bag.


Karl Lagerfeld, Chanel’s couturier since 1983, said he wished to show that the Gabrielle bag can be worn in “many different circumstances.”

The Los Angeles Times reports that Williams, a native of Virginia Beach, Va., said the Notorious B.I.G. introduced him to haute couture.

“I was like a nerdy little black kid on a skateboard. So looking at high-end fashion was something that I really didn’t understand in the very beginning,” he said. “And then I realized, slowly but surely, man, this is amazing. And although there’s mostly the perception that it’s for women, I just started to see, OK, as a man I can wear some of this. So I would wear sunglasses here, or a jacket there.”


Williams attended the Chanel show this season without the Gabrielle on his shoulder, but says he is slowly getting used to having a bag.

“When I first started wearing it, I didn’t have anything in it. I was just so excited to have it,” he said. “But now I use it to carry my phone, and—you know—essential personal things.”


The forthcoming ads also feature actress Kristen Stewart and models Cara Delevingne and Caroline de Maigret.

Shoutout to the Notorious B.I.G.!!!



Ms. Bronner Helm is the Deputy Editorial Director at Colorlines. Mouthy Black Girl. Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Fellow. Shea Butter Feminist. Virgo Sun, Aries Moon.

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