Πέμπτη, 18 Απριλίου 2013

Biography: Coco Chanel

Gabrielle "Coco" Bonheur Chanel, the founder of the Chanel brand.

 Born on August 19, 1883, in Saumur, France. Her early years were anything but glamorous. After her mother’s death,at the age of only thirty-one, Chanel was put in an orphanage by her father, where she was taught how to sew—a skill that would lead to her life’s work. Her nickname came from another occupation entirely. During her brief career as a singer, Chanel performed in clubs in Vichy and Moulins where she was called “Coco.” Some say that the name comes from one of the songs she used to sing. 


 It was at Moulins that Chanel met the young French ex-cavalry officer Étienne BalsanFor the next three years, she lived with him in his chateau Royallieu near Compiègne, an area known for its wooded equestrian paths and the hunting life. 
 In 1908 Chanel began an affair with one of Balsan's friends, Arthur “Boy” Capel. The affair lasted nine years, but even after Capel married an English aristocrat, Lady Diana Wyndham in 1918, he did not completely break off with Chanel. His death in a car accident, in late 1919, was the single most devastating event in Chanel's life. 
 Chanel began designing hats while living with Balsan, she became a licensed modiste hat maker in 1910 and opened a boutique at 21 rue Cambon, Paris named Chanel Modes.


    

                                     
 In 1913, Chanel opened a boutique in Deauville financed by Arthur Capel where she introduced deluxe casual clothes suitable for leisure and sport. The fashions were constructed from humble fabrics such as jersey and tricot, primarily used for men's underwear. 


 In the 1920s, Chanel took her thriving business to new heights. She launched her first perfume, Chanel No. 5, which was the first to feature a designer’s name. Perfume “is the unseen, unforgettable, ultimate accessory of  fashion. . . . that heralds your arrival and prolongs your departure,” Chanel once explained.
 In 1922, Théophile Bader, founder of the Paris Galeries Lafayettewas interested in inaugurating the sale of the Chanel No. 5 fragrance in his department store. 
 In 1925, she introduced the now legendary Chanel suit with collarless jacket and well-fitted skirt. Her designs were revolutionary for the time, she helped women say good-bye to the days of corsets!
 Another 1920s revolutionary design was Chanel’s little black dress. The concept of it is often cited as a Chanel contribution to the fashion lexicon and as an article of clothing survives to this day. Its first incarnation was executed in thin silk, crèpe de chine, and had long sleeves. In 1926, Vogue editors predicted it would "become sort of a uniform for all women of taste", embodying a standardized aesthetic!

 

 The Chanel couture was a lucrative business enterprise, by 1935 employing four thousand people. But, in 1939, at the beginning of World War II, Chanel closed her shops, she claimed that it was not a time for fashion and  thousand female employees lost their jobs. 
  During the German occupation of France, Chanel got involved with a German military officer, Hans Gunther von Dincklage. She got special permission to stay in her apartment at the Hotel Ritz. After the war ended, Chanel was interrogated by her relationship with von Dincklage, but she was not charged as a collaborator.
  Chanel left Paris, spending some years in Switzerland and eventually returning to Paris in 1954. She first received scathing reviews from critics, but her feminine and easy-fitting designs soon won over shoppers around the world.



 As 1971 began, Chanel was 87 years old, but nonetheless stuck to her usual routine of preparing the spring catalog. She had gone for a long drive that afternoon and feeling ill, went to bed early where she died on Sunday, January 10, 1971 at the Hotel Ritz where she had resided for more than 30 years. She never married, having once said “I never wanted to weigh more heavily on a man than a bird.”  
 A little more than a decade after her death, designer Karl Lagerfeld took the reins at her company to continue the Chanel legacy. Today her namesake company continues to thrive and is believed to generate hundreds of millions in sales each year. 
 She was the only fashion designer to appear on Time magazine's list of the 100 most influential people of 20th century. Chanel's influence extended beyond couture clothing. Her design aesthetic was realized in jewelryhandbags, and fragrance. Her signature scent, Chanel No. 5 has become an iconic product.




Quotes:





"A woman has the age she deserves."




"Nature gives you the face you have at 20; it is up to you to merit the face you have at 50."




“In order to be irreplaceacle, one must always be different.” 



“As long as you know men are like children, you know everything!” 



“Dress shabbily and they remember the dress; dress impeccably and they remember the woman.” 



“I don't care what you think about me. I don't think about you at all.” 

















3 σχόλια:

  1. Such an Idol! btw chanel no5 is my all time favorite perfume!

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  2. Καλα που βρεθηκε η Κοκό και εκσυγχρονιστηκε το γυναικειο ενδυμα!

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