Lagerfeld, one of the most sought after, and recognizable figures in fashion has died today in Paris. He was most known for his notable stent at the helm of the house of Coco Chanel from 1983 until his death. While reconfiguring the houses image, he took the signature tweed jacket and quilted handbag and propelled it into the closets of the worlds most fashionable. Lagerfeld will be remembered most for his ability to recreate and redefine what it means to be a fashion designer.
Karl Lagerfeld was born on September 10, 1933, in Hamburg, Germany, to Otto Lagerfeld and Elisabeth Bahlmann. He started his career by winning the International Wool Secretariat in the coat category, which landed him a job with the couturier Pierre Balmain, where he designed for films and dressed stage and silver screen stars alike, after which, he became head designer at the house of Jean Patou. In 1963, he signed on to be a contributor for Gaby Aghion at Chloé, soon after in 1974; he was offered the creative director job at the house of Fendi, which was known as thee most premiere furrier in Europe, a post that he held until his death.
In 1983, a chance meeting with Alain Wertheimer, who owned a 50% stake in Chanel, asked Lagerfeld to help generate a new buzz for the iconic French House, which saw declining sales since the death of Coco Chanel at the age of 87 in 1971. Of course Lagerfeld took on the challenge, and dedicated his entire fashion career to the house, where he put on extravagant fashion shows in Versailles, West Lothian, Scotland, Dallas, Seoul, Havana, Cuba along with other over the top marketing campaigns. Chanel was back at the top of the fashion world, and is still leading the pack, with astounding sales, and a positive trajectory he will be forever know for transforming the iconic brand.
Today, Instagram is filled with heart felt messages from models Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner, and Naomi Campbell; fashion designers Marc Jacobs and Tom Ford, as well as American Vogue and a host of other notable fashion figures who Lagerfeld touched with his, wit, charm, sophistication and pioneering spirit. Karl Lagerfeld’s legacy will live on forever and will be an inspirational story for young fashion designers, stylist, editors and photographers alike.