It is without a doubt a fact that Karl Lagerfeld has made a considerable impact on the world of fashion. As he once said, “I am a living label. My name is not Lagerfeld, but Labelfeld”. He called fashion one of his “hobbies”, and it obviously occupied most of his life. On February 19, he passed away leaving a significant heritage. It worth the effort to detail how this great man affected the beauty and fashion industries.
Each time set decorators constructed a small world for his shows: a copy of a supermarket, a rocket, the Eiffel Tower or even an Monte Carlo casino. In summer of 2018, at one of his last shows, a casino was built in “Grand Palais” for the Lagerfeld`s show. The models walked between the gaming tables, while participants were losing and winning money in roulette or blackjack. It was a spectacle, one of a kind, one that online gambling in Canada or the USA has been unable to match.
He was born in Hamburg and at 14 moved to Paris to devote himself to creating clothes. Although critics didn`t welcome his first attempts (the debut collection for Jean Patou was considered “too defiant”), he continued his work in a crazy rhythm, which he kept till his last days.
In 1954, Pierre Balmain set a competition for the best coat design. Young Karl won, at that time he was only 16 y.o. The young designer spent 3 years working at Balmain but left to take some time studying life.
In 1965, when Fendi was associated exclusively with rich housewives in fur coats, Lagerfeld became a breath of fresh air. He invented the famous emblem – the “ FF”, which became a symbol of the brand, as well as fur coats, imitating a leopard. Lagerfeld has been at the head of the brand for 50 years, meanwhile being the first invited designer in the history of Fendi.
In 1982, Karl headed the Chanel house. He rethought the classic models, added a new cut, unusual details, boldness, sexuality, and his unique style. The Chanel house has become an ideal platform for creativity, and the brand itself reborn from the ashes.
“Koko would have hated it. She created a certain image and I have the right to improve it. I have to keep my brand. I have to go from what Chanel was to what it should or could be,” said Lagerfeld, who leaded the brand 12 years after Gabriel’s death.
“Fashion is something you cannot control,” said Lagerfeld. Suddenly it is time for a change, whether you like it or not. If you do not, someone else will do it for you – such is Lagerfeld’s philosophy. Anyway, great people never die, their names live in their heritage a long time after.