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So great is Coco Chanel’s legacy that fans make pilgrimages to her Paris apartment (although she also lived in the Paris Ritz for 30 years), which is preserved as she left it and endlessly referenced for style – as is every image of her and every tiny thing she ever designed. From her use of monochrome to her oversized ‘costume’ pearls and cuffs, everything is still sublimely, continuously referenced. As she herself once said: “Fashion fades, only style remains the same.” Only a small number of people take the thoughts inside their head and create their own, unique way of dressing. They are the ones who become the fashion designers. Have you ever thought about how hard their job can be? Designers are the ones who decide how fashion will take its course, whether it will stay the same or make a drastic change. Gabrielle Chanel, born a pauper, was one of these people. Her barely educated, nevertheless ingenious mind helped her to become a woman remembered as the greatest designer of the 20th Century. 


• Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel was born on the breadline in Saumur, France in 1883.


 • During her childhood, her mother caught an untreatable disease and died.


• At age 6 her father ran off and abandoned her and her siblings.

• Officially orphaned, she became a ward of state and eventually was sent to an orphanage in Aubazine, France.

• At age 17, Chanel entered a convent in the area around Aubazine. There, she learned how to sew and mend her own clothes.

• At age 22, she rebelled, left the convent, and became a bar singer in Paris. 

• Performing as a bar singer is where she adopted the nickname Coco’.


• Coco Chanel began as a hat designer in Paris in 1908. 

• She created a very boyish hat, which contrasted hugely with the big, fancy hats that were in vogue at the time. 


• She designed and sold these hats in Paris in a millinery shop she opened in 1910 .



• A rich boyfriend’ helped her open her own clothing boutique in 1913.


• Chanel No. 5 was the first fragrance from Parisian couturier Gabrielle “CoCo” Chanel, and has been on sale continually since its introduction in 1921. It has been described as “the world’s most legendary fragrance”, and remains the company’s most famous perfume.



• She launched the famous Chanel suit in 1923.

The flirtatious Chanel was proposed to by many a man, as well as the Duke of Westminster Hugh “Bendor” Grosvenor, the richest man in Europe but she refused the offer saying, “There have been several duchesses of Westminster. There is only one Chanel” 

(Hugh Grosvenor, Duke of Westminster and Coco Chanel)


• Coco Chanel was rumored to have had a love affair with famed artist Salvador Dalí. 


 

(Coco Chanel and Salvador Dalí )


 

• In 1939, because of the sudden outbreak of World War II, she closed her shop. She moved to the glitzy Ritz Hotel (which she later bought) with her German boyfriend, a Nazi officer. 

 

•Because she was jobless and nearly broke, her current lover helped her to get a job at a Nazi headquarters. When they broke up, however, she threatened to reveal military secrets to other, enemy countries; thus she was exiled of sorts by the Nazis to Switzerland.

• Chanel’s boutique reopened in 1954, when Coco was seventy one years old. 

• Chanel’s wellknown “2.55” takes its name from the month and year when Coco Chanel has launched the luxurious item: February 1955.



• She became part of the Establishment, a very high-class group in Europe, in the 60s and continued to design spectacular clothing.

• Coco Chanel died in her beloved Ritz Hotel in 1971 at the age of eighty seven. 

• She created a new look for women in the 20th century, creating clothes that were primarily comfortable. A Chanel suit of 1923 or handbag is still seen as a landmark purchase for women of increasingly younger ages.



• Chanel became known for taking menswear and adapting it to fit the modern woman who didn’t have time for corsets and glitz and glamour, but still wanted to look fashionable.

 

• Her first success ever was a loose fitting sweater, paired with a belt and loose skirt.

• Her catchy logos and two toned shoes proved successful as she got richer and became famous all over France and into the United States. 



• Chanel often said that she only designed things that she would wear herself, and accordingly often modeled her own clothing. 


• In 1936, Chanel started to make long, graceful dresses, and the glitzy evening wear started to appear. 


• Chanel turned black, formerly a color of mourning, into a color of elegance when she became famous for making the simple but tasteful “little black dress”, worn by Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

• Coco Chanel believed that being copied was important- it meant that you were popular. 

• She is also famous for inventing sweater sets and developing the first artificial suntan lotion.

• Her imaginative, unique mind was entered when she said, “Fashion isn’t simply a matter of clothes. Fashion is in the air, born upon the wind. One intuits it!” 


• The Chanel No.5 scent is the best selling in the world.The company estimates that a bottle is sold worldwide every 55 seconds.


• The famous fragrance is named for her lucky number and no other reason.


• The interlocking Cs of Coco Chanel remain one of the ultimate brand insignia. 


• Since 1983, Chanel has been designed by Karl Lagerfeld.


• The building where her apartment is in Paris was bought by Chanel in 1920, and still houses the ground-floor shop, the haute couture workrooms in the attic (where 100 seamstresses still work entirely by hand), and what is now Karl Lagerfeld’s study.


Coco Chanel’s bobbed hair, bright red lips and outspoken manner also broke the mould. Over all, Coco Chanel had a major affect on the fashion world.  She has the history of a woman whose radical style made her contemporaries seem boring. The brand could not be more alive with watches, beauty, fragrance, womenswear and new stores all around the world. Coco Chanel truly was a fashion genius.

 

 

Chanel Diamond Forever Bag::

The Chanel Diamond Forever bag was created by Chanel as an exclusive bag made in conjunction with jewelers from the Chanel jewelry section. The bag is made of supple matte white alligator skin in the traditional Chanel shoulder bag design. The clasp features the Chanel monogram made of eighteen karat white gold and encrusted with 334 diamonds (totaling 3.56 carats). Only thirteen of the bags were made and primarily offered to Chanel’s best customers.

 

$261,000

 

Chanel $port x Circa 2006::


double CC shit! – ti$a

CHANEL “2.55” x The Story Behind The Legendary Bag


Chanel’s wellknown “2.55” takes its name from the month and year when Coco Chanel has launched the luxurious item: February 1955.


Coco Chanel’s childhood and revolutionizing ideas in an authentic bag.

The burgundy lining that Coco herself placed in all black bags is a playful nod towards her old uniform at Aubazine School in the South of France.

The quilt is inspired by several sources: the stained-glass windows of the abbey at Aubazine, where Coco Chanel grew up, by jockeys’ riding coats as well as by Coco’s own light-brown suede cushions in her rue Cambon apartment in Paris.

The revolutionizing shoulder strap – previously found on soldiers’ bags and the heavy satchels female bicycle porters carried during the war – are made for woman in modern times.


Coco Chanel revolutionized fashion for women by using stretching materials in 1914/15 when she had the idea to use beige cotton knitwear of men’s underwear for the clothing of sportive ladies. This idea influenced fashion-designers of the following decades lastingly.


The shoulder strap

 


Coco realised the shoulder strap in a world of aeroplanes, cars, and busy lives when traditional hand-held bags were simply no longer practical.

 

 

As a result, the shoulder strap – previously found only on soldiers’ bags and the heavy satchels female bicycle porters carried during the war – made its debut in the world of fashion. Coco’s straps proved an absolute sensation. Two versions of the bag were produced: a lambskin model to be carried in the daytime, and an 
evening-wear design made of either silk or jersey, a material traditionally found in menswear, which Coco had introduced to ladies’ fashion in the 1910s. 


 

The quilt

 

Alongside N°5, the camellia, pearl necklaces and the little black dress, this criss-cross design has become one of the timeless symbols of the house of Chanel.


Good design lasts forever!



You can combine this bag with jeans as well as with a suit or evening gown. The Chanel 2.55 doesn’t depend on seasonal trends. If you take care of the bag even your grandchildren can use it!

Over 30 new models are produced each year, forming part of the House’s seven annual collections. 6 to 15 people are working for up to 18 hours (depending on the material) on one Chanel “2.55”. While in the past, up to 80% of all bags produced were black, they represent only 50% of the diverse range proposed today.

“We use a different shade of beige practically every time,” explains the responsible manager, “so things never get boring. Before any bag goes into production, the site’s development facility first finalises the details of the designs sent by Karl Lagerfeld’s studio.

Working from sketches, a range of hand-made mock-ups are produced before selecting a final prototype and deciding on its exact proportions and stitching details. This whole development stage is shrouded in mystery and usually takes around a week to complete. Then out of the 200 to 300 prototypes produced for each collection, the studio selects around 30.

The site’s archives hold nearly 3,000 different bags; together they map out CHANEL’s history. Lined up like trophies, these different models serve to inspire the design teams of today, as well as helping them to resolve any problems they might be having with the ideal shape of a handle or detail on a strap. Once the bag has been approved for production, a team of leather craftsmen, engineers and cutters will work on more than 10 different models every week to meet the demand from boutiques. However, before the bag can be assembled, the leather must first be prepared. It is cut from the skin either by hand, using a punch, or by computer, and is then machine-stitched, trimmed and finished. This is an extremely precise process, with all dimensions measured to within a fraction of a millimetre.

80% of the total production time is spent on the assembly table, where CHANEL’s master craftsmen use their expertise to produce an item of unmistakeable luxury. After the material has been prepared, the bag is given its structure by inserting heat-sealed leather-finished supports. Each bag is then turned inside out and back again, in keeping with Mademoiselle Chanel’s firm belief in the importance of hidden luxury: the inside should be as good as the outside. As a result, the same amount of care still goes into the lining of each bag as goes into its exterior.“

The bags are then quilted using machines specially developed by Chanel’s engineers, and this stage, though technical, is often one of the most creative in the design process, as can be seen on the series of models inspired by the stained-glass windows of the abbey at Aubazine, where Coco Chanel grew up. 



Coco Avant Chanel Filming, With Help From Karl Lagerfeld::


“Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street; fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.”


Those brilliant words were spoken by Coco Chanel over 40 years ago and they are as true today as they were back then. Coco Chanel is still considered one of Haute Couture’s most iconic figures and now there is set to be a film which will be released in the near future about her life.


The feature length film entitled Coco Avant Chanel (Coco before Chanel) will focus on Coco’s early years in fashion and explore her romances and experiences and will feature archival Chanel dressess. Karl Lagerfeld will be supervising the re-creation of costumes and accessories for the production. Audrey Tatou is set to play the young fashion designer and the film will be directed by acclaimed French director Anne Fontaine.


 The 12-week production started Sept. 15 in Paris. The movie is slated to be released in 2009, and since Warner Bros. is behind the project, expect a full-out, hopefully gratifying, film.

 

 

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