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New Chanel Era: Karl Lagerfeld

For 12 years following the founder’s death the House of Chanel was at an all time low. Lacking in progressive direction it became indelibly associated with an ageing, well to do clientele who continued to purchase classics designed in the Chanel tradition. However, it was not until 1983, when Karl Lagerfeld was invited to design the boutique and accessories collection for the still ailing fashion house, that the name Chanel once again became top international fashion news.

Lagerfeld showed his first haute couture collection under the name of Chanel in January 1983. From the outset he incorporated Chanel’s signature designs into his work. He created his own archive by cutting out every reference to Chanel from his vast collection of magazines and used them to compile scrapbooks of Chanel’s work into which he dips into constantly.