Karl Lagerfeld, the legendary fashion icon who helms Chanel and Fendi has passed away in Paris at the age of 85. Born Karl Otto Lagerfeldt on 10 September 1933 in Hamburg, Germany, the man was a prolific designer and has worn many hats, and adds photographer, author and publishing house in his long and illustrious career. (At 29, he decided to remove the ‘t’ in his last name to become Lagerfeld as it sounded “more commercial”). Written in his legacy is his work at Chloé where he was the principal designer for 15 years and at Fendi, he coined the now iconic double-F monogram, and is the visionary behind the lavish shows held by Chanel at The Grand Palais.
“It is with deep sadness that the house of Chanel announces the passing of Karl Lagerfeld,” said Chanel in a statement. They did not release a time or cause of death. Though concerns for his health first arose last month during the Chanel Couture show, his absence from his regular catwalk bow was very much felt. As his stand-in was Virginie Viard, Chanel’s fashion creation studio director. Over at Fendi, WWD reports that Lagerfeld “worked tirelessly until the end” by giving instructions to the team preparing for the Autumn/Winter 2019 show due to take place in Milan this week. As for Chanel’s upcoming show at Paris Fashion Week, chief executive office Alain Wertheimer entrusts Viard with the creative work for the collections “so that the legacy of Gabrielle Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld can live on.” Viard has been working alongside Lagerfeld and has been a close collaborator for more than 30 years.
Goodbye Karl Lagerfeld, you will be truly missed.
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