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  • Lila Dekhi


Written and Created by Lila Dekhi

Photo Credit: Vittorio Zunino Celotto

Hello everyone... to start off this blog, I will be introducing Icon of the Week. Each week or every other week, I will be talking about a new icon and discuss their life, accomplishments, and legacy. I chose Karl Lagerfeld as my first person because not only is he my favorite fashion designer but someone I admire very much. He's one of the reasons I fell in love with fashion and I've obsessed ever since. He may have been creative director of Chanel but he was someone that changed fashion forever and that has led an inspiring path for the present and new generations to come. I believe that whether you’re in love with fashion or not, he’s a person everyone should know about. I can’t wait for you guys to read about him...Enjoy!


Photo Credit: Karl Lagerfeld

Karl Otto Lagerfeld was born on September 10th, 1933, in Hamburg, Germany.

He was born to parents Elisabeth Bahlmann and Otto Lagerfeld.

In 1923, Lagerfeld's father had founded his own company called Glücksklee (translates to "four-leaf clover"), which specialized in manufacturing evaporated milk.

Lagerfeld's mother, Elisabeth, worked as a lingerie saleswoman in Berlin, Germany before having children: Karl Lagerfeld and his older sister, Martha Christiana Lagerfeldt. Karl also had a half-sister named Thea Lagerfeldt, who is from his father's first marriage.

Photo Credit: Keystone-France

At a young age, Karl was different from the rest of his classmates. Instead of taking part in sports, he was interested in visual arts and enjoyed sketching, learning new languages, and designing.

When he turned 14, Lagerfeld made the decision to move to Paris to study drawing and history. After being there for a couple years, he participated in a design competition and won first place in the coat category.

Fun Fact: At this very competition, he met future designer Yves Saint Laurent, who would become his friend/rival and also later create his own famous and successful brand.

When Lagerfeld won the design contest, this led to Karl working for Pierre Balmain as junior assistant and later moving up as apprentice. He stayed there for three years.

After leaving his job at Balmain, Lagerfeld became the artistic director of Jean Patou in 1957/58. During this time, he took part in designing ten haute couture collections.

Photo Credit: Daniel Simon

In the 1960s, Karl became a freelancer and ventured out within the industry and designed for several labels such as Charles Jourdan, Krizia, and Max Mara.

It wasn't until 1963, he started to freelance for Chloé and in 1966, became creative director. He worked for the house until 1983 and returned for an additional period from 1992-1997.

In 1975, Karl launched a perfume under Chloé called Parfums Lagerfeld and gave this fragrance sweet scents with notes of jasmine, honeysuckle, and orange blossom.

Photo Credit: Pierre Vauthey

Not only was Karl in charge of designing for Chloé for twenty years but in 1966 he became creative director of the Italian fashion house, FENDI. It was there he would stay until his passing in 2019.

In 1983, Lagerfeld's contract ended with Chloé and his career led him to something even bigger...

Photo Source: Pinterest

Karl Lagerfeld was appointed creative director of CHANEL.

Before Lagerfeld took over, Chanel was struggling and was thought of as not going anywhere.

When Karl was given the role as creative director, he completely turned the house around. He made the brand better, more interesting, more fabulous, and made sure to take it to the next level. His vision gave Chanel life again.

Photo Source: Pinterest

On January 25th, 1983, Lagerfeld launched his first ever Chanel couture collection.

Lagerfeld had only a few models walk in the show. In the book "Kaiser Karl: The Life of Karl Lagerfeld", by Raphaëlle Bacqué, he wrote about what the models wore. The author stated, "one in a blue coat and skirt, the second in a white one, the third in a red one, accompanied by the songs of Édith Piaf and Charles Trenet."

Every Chanel collection Karl designed were modernized but held a type of elegance and grace that couldn't be replicated by anyone else. He honored the legacy of the House of Chanel and made sure to add his own twist to the clothes by providing them with his own unique flair. Lagerfeld created his own path and style. Whether it be having the idea of interlocking the double C's on almost everything Chanel to redesigning the classic 2.55 Flap Bag in 1983, as well as bringing back old designs and revamping them, Karl was always remarkable in every stage as Chanel's creative director.

Photo Credit: Stephanie Cardinale-Corbis

In 1984, after being at Chanel for over a year, Lagerfeld launched his own label called KARL LAGERFELD.

Today, there are over 120 of his stores worldwide.

Karl Lagerfeld was very talented in many aspects of the fashion world and one of those things was photography. He would shoot his own Chanel and Fendi campaigns and even photographed editorials for magazines like Numéro, Harper's Bazaar and V Magazine.

Photo Credit: Annie Leibovitz

Fun Fact: Karl Lagerfeld had a blue-cream sortie Birman cat named Choupette. In 2011, a friend of Lagerfeld's had him catsit for a weekend and once it was time to give the cat back, Karl asked to keep her and the rest was history. The two had a very close bond. Choupette is thankfully still alive and even has her own Instragram page, called @choupetteofficiel (which I follow..I am an animal lover).

During Karl Lagerfeld's iconic career, he has collaborated with icons like model/actress Kaia Gerber to

brands such as Barbie, Coca-Cola, Vans, H&M, and more.

Photo Credit: Gisela Schober

On February 19th, 2019, Karl Lagerfeld passed away from pancreatic cancer at the age of 85 in Paris, France.

Photo Credit: CHANEL

The last Chanel show Karl Lagerfeld designed was the F/W 19 collection. Chanel's current creative director, Virginie Viard, was also involved in the creation of the show too. It took place on Wednesday, March 6th, 2019, at the Grand Palais in Paris during PFW. It ended with a standing ovation and a farewell to a legend.

We love you Karl...♥️

I hope you enjoyed reading the first "ICON OF THE WEEK" issue.

XoXo LD 💋

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