There are very few people who haven’t heard about Coco Chanel. She was one of the most influential women in fashion and she is also deeply respected by feminists who consider her the one who managed to break the barriers of constraining clothes that women had to wear. Her style was extremely simple but very elegant and she gained a place in a top with the most influential people.
Her childhood was very hard as she was born in a poor family consisting only of her unwed mother and her father who liked to live a nomadic life. She learned to sew at the age of six and when her mother died she was sent to a convent for orphans when she learned strict discipline.
When she left the convent she took a job as a seamstress and started singing in cabaret where she took the name Coco. She met a rich ex-cavalry office and spent three years in luxury with him. After this affair she started a love story with one of his friends who helped her greatly with her shops but their relationship was rocky as he wasn’t faithful to her. He got married but they were still very close until his death in 1919, an event that was emotionally distressing for her.
Her fashion contains a lot of elements referring to ethnic elements, mostly Russian culture. Also, she changed society’s idea about having tanned skin. Before Chanel, a tanned person was considered a laborer and it was a sign of the poor. Probably one of the most important elements of her clothing was the Little Black Dress, which remained a fashion icon. Her original design featured silk and it had long sleeves. It is traditionally accessorized with belts and pearls. She was known to love jewels and to display them whenever she could. An important element of her style is wearing opulent jewels.
There is no doubt that Coco Chanel was a woman of great taste and probably a genius. She was also a controversial character which probably helped her model her original fashion pieces. Nowadays, a lot of fashion designers try to imitate and use elements from her style which remained timeless.