Karl World may not seem like a logical successor to Disney World but trust me, it is. In my (monochromatic) dreams, Karl World is a place of ponytails, sharp tailoring and whiskers on extremely pampered kittens. Oh, and clothes. Racks upon racks of beautifully cut, exquisitely made clothes. With Karl’s face on them, obviously. (As my boyfriend noted the other day, clothes are pointless unless they have Karl’s face on them.)
Anyway, Karl World may not actually exist but my dream inched a step closer to becoming reality with the opening of the Karl x Selfridges pop up shop last week. The pop up was created to showcase the Autumn/Winter 2012 collection of Karl’s eponymous line, the newly-created Karl Lagerfeld Paris Man and an Olympic-inspired ‘Team Karl’ collection. The latter includes tongue-in-chic t-shirts (my favourite is the cognitive-illusion torch print), gold-splattered denim and a pair of oh-so-Parisian leather shorts while souvenirs include totes, scarves, phone cases and temporary tattoos. And then, of course, there are the obligatory collars, sunglasses and gloves that no Karl can be without.Although not a theme park, Karl’s imprint is everywhere. Not just figuratively – it’s his collection, after all – but literally. His inimitable side-profile silhouette is larger than life, laser cut into a giant frame, built into mirrors and stamped into the lining of his jackets. “Sometimes even I’m surprised at what can be done with my head,” he recently told The Independent. And yet Karl’s head – much like his cat – is slowly weaving itself into the fabric of modern pop culture, as instantly recognisable as Mickey’s. It’s fitting because Karl has said that he sees himself as a “cartoon” (apparently his first choice of vocation was “cartoon artist” and most recently he created the manga-inspired character Mon Shu for his upcoming collaboration with Shu Uemura). And what’s a cartoon character without his own theme park? Watch this space.
PS I brought Karl Doll with me to see the collection because he’s a big Team Karl supporter. As you can imagine, he was very popular with Selfridges’ staff.