I recently went to watch the movie Coco Avant Chanel, which is currently on at Nouveau cinemas. It is about the beginning stages of Coco Chanel’s life. The movie was so charming in that French elegant way that, only the French can do. I mean they make smoking look so sexy and classy and you actually forget the harm and the stinky smoke that goes with it. All you think is “wow smoking can be chic.”
OK, so yes it is that good, and I highly recommend the movie if that is your scene. But enough of the film critic in me and let me tell you what was so inspiring… I had no clue that Coco Chanel was such a rebel in the times of restricted corsets, peacock feathered hats and all the contents of your jewellery box adorned around your neck, so you really do look like a Christmas tree.
This first, Queen of couture, and I really do mean first as in beginning of the 1900’s, refused to go with the trends and instead walked to the sound of her own drum and redesigned men’s wear to suit her cute, boyish figure. It started off with hats and turned into an empire that is still very much alive today!
Nearly a century later, the Chanel logo is the corner stone to elegant fashion- adored by celebs and the chicest of the chic. Her influence has even trickled down to us folk who only dream to have an original Chanel bag or better still the Chanel suit. I know at the moment the closest I can get to owning anything Chanel is to buy her fragrances. A girl can always dream though!
Quick fact… Did you know that she created the first ballet pump because heels were just too uncomfortable for her and from that day on she lived by the saying “luxury must be comfortable”? Can you imagine not having ballet pumps in your wardrobe? I certainly can’t!!
Coco Chanel was also the first designer to feature a little black dress in Vouge in 1926 and as you can see by Rachel Bilson’s little black dress, her influence is still very much around today. Also don’t get me started on the quilted one and only Chanel bag that is my dream bag and is such a high quality symbol… I mean you can almost say this women single handily created fashion for women.
Nicole Ritche, Lauren Conrad and Rachel Bilson
Many a celeb has had the honour of being the face of Chanel, with more recent campaigns featuring Nicole Kidman and Keira Knightly. However, how many designers can boast about having had Marilyn Monroe as the face of their fragrance Chanel No 5? Which also happens to be the most successful fragrance ever and not to mention the first ever designer fragrance. One word… Chanel!
The remarkable Coco Chanel was the pioneer for women’s fashion and created a world for us, where being different is not bad and restrictions forced upon us in life are able to fall away. Fashion as we know it today is because of a single woman who thought out of the box and did not care about following the flock. A true role model to me and women around the globe.