There's no person interested in fashion who doesn't recognize his signature white pony-tail, fan and sunglasses. No doubt he is one of the greats in fashion. Probably the ultimate and most versatile designer of our times. Prolific and driven by change he's certainly one of the industry's most successful designers.
Designing is not his only passion. He loves photography and often shoots his own campaigns, along with editorials for numerous magazines. He has a library collection of 230 000 volumes, and his own imprint, 7L. Also his passions for perfumes, art and magazines are legendary.
From 1963-83 and 1992-97 he designed Chloè, in 1965 he also started working for Fendi, in 1983 was appointed artistic director of Chanel, and one year later his own label was born. Now you see why I admire him so much. He is a legend. He is Karl Lagerfeld.
The designer boldly reinvented the the rich legacy of house codes left by mademoiselle Coco Chanel. Her favorite pearls now appear as little evening bags; tweed is transformed into fluffy leggings and matching berets, a love for the sporty outdoors life is expressed via Chanel-branded snowboards and surfboards. The one other thing Gabrille Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld have in common is relish for the present times and for the future. As Chanel herself once said, "I am neither in the past nor avant-garde. My style follows life."
Karl's signature designs are hidden in every detail that makes instant recognition possible and his favorite pieces are always the ones from the next collection, which is also his ultimate goal. When asked to describe his own work the designer quoted Voltaire's line: Everything that needs an explanation is not worth it.
This remarkable man is inspired by everything. He says there should be only one rule: eyes wide open. When designing he has in mind several women, never and always the same, women who change with the times and are interested in what is going on - not only in fashion. The greatest influence to his career are all the events he has gone trough, the changes in the times. Lagerfeld aims to the future so much that he doesn't find it necessary to think about what makes the past what it became.
His definition of beauty is again a quote, this time by Marlow: there is no beauty without some strangeness in the proportions. If you are curious what's the life philosophy of this successful and legendary designer, I should tell you it's really simple: Every decision (also in fashion) is a refusal (Spinoza).
When asked what's the most important lesson he has ever learned he said something we should all remember: You can only learn what not to do - there are no lessons what to do...
"I love fashion, the evolution of time, and fashion is the reflection of it." ~ Karl Lagerfeld
Here are my favorite pieces from the Spring 2011 Couture collection:
To see the complete collection click here.
And If you are interested in the latest Fall 2011 Ready-to-Wear collection it is here.
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Have a great day!