Coco Chanel is a name most women across the globe have heard at least once in their lifetime. We see her fashions, smell her luxurious perfumes, and only wish to own some Chanel items, which are usually priced at exceptionally high values, due to the fact that they are exceptionally made and are of such a high stature in the fashion world. Today, Lionesse would like to elaborate a bit more on the life and career of Coco Chanel, the fabulous style icon from the 1920s, and give you some insight on who she was as a person, rather than simply hearing the name and associating it with a brand.
Coco Chanel was born Gabrielle Bonheur Chanelle, on August 19th, 1883 in Saumur, France, to an unwed mother, Jeanne Duvolle, who worked as a charity laundrywoman at the local poorhouse, and to her father, a street vendor who sold work clothes to the lower class population, as well as undergarments for the gentlemen as well. Coco grew up in poor conditions, yet still managed to rise to the top, letting nothing stand in her way.
She got her beginnings in the limelight when she started her career in singing at a local cabaret, which was where she acquired the name ‘Coco’, due to two songs which she performed religiously. The songs were titled, ‘Ko Ko Ri Ko’, and ‘Qui qu’a vu Coco’, which earned her loving admirers and longtime fans. From there, she would earn money in a plate which was passed around the audience, where fans would give as much as they wanted to or could to express their gratitude for her beautiful singing.
As time went on, she realized her love and passion for the finer things in life, and realized she wanted to change women’s fashion completely. Women were accustomed to wearing uncomfortable clothing that wasn’t fashionable in any sense, and wanted to change that. After meeting many of the movers and shakers in the industry, she began to find her niche and began having some of her creations sold in reputable stores. Once she established herself in the fashion industry, creating everything from purses, to perfumes, to clothing, her career took off and was booming. The world’s elite began flocking to find her collections, and from there, things only looked up for this persistent, determined woman who once had nothing.
Some of her most noteable creations are her Chanel No. 5 perfume, which is still very much in high demand today, as well as Chanel purses and sunglasses. Although on the exceptionally pricey side, her clothing and creations are items a woman could purchase and use as staple items. Coco Chanel believed that a woman should have a few pieces of extraordinary designer clothing, and utilize them in different styles and fashions for a long time to come. She said that every woman should be able to own designer clothing and that was her dream for women across the world.
Sadly, Ms. Chanel passed away in Paris, France on January 10th, 1971 at 87 years of age. Throughout her life, many opportunities arose and she would grasp them by the horns, never allowing herself to be defeated. She was an exceptional, classy woman who still lives on in the hearts and minds of fashionistas across the globe, through her Chanel Company, and the many biographies and movie spots her life has contained.
Coco Chanel is one of the most legendary fashion designers of all time, and we owe her many thanks for giving us the opportunity to be blessed with her style – and for shaping the way fashion has turned out now, and for the future.