It is with great sadness that the fashion world receives the news of Karl Lagerfeld’s passing. With his powdered-white ponytail and oversized sunglasses, when Lagerfeld entered the room, he turned heads. A beautifully crafted air of ease surrounded him. He was a true creative; an icon not just of his time, but for future generations of designers.
A Google search of Karl Lagerfeld today will bring up a plethora of news articles informing us of the passing of a true icon, of the sadness that the fashion world will feel, of the gap that has been left by his excellence. Yet we want to look past that – to see all that should be valued of his. I click on his online store instead to peruse his fresh take on haute couture. A far cry from his daffodil-yellow wool coat with its buckled collar of 1954, all Lagerfeld’s collections featured something new and exciting; a constant recreation of what couture meant. Even Lagerfeld’s new campaign had the man himself involved at all levels with him photographing models Alton Mason and Luna Bijl.
Starting his career at an extremely young age, Lagerfeld moved to Paris at 14 in his search of the world of fashion. It is well-known that it was a design-based competition that propelled him into the limelight and helped to secure him a job with French designer Pierre Balmain. By the time he was 28 he had accrued enough experience to ‘go it alone’, designing collections for Chloe, Fendi and many other well-known brands. His incredible work ethic never faltered; heralded for completing 16-hour days on what he loved, Lagerfeld was not one to do things by halves. He was as versatile as he was talented, delving into film and photography in order to further secure an identity for himself. He would make sure that his work was showcased on a grand-scale – never letting logistics get in the way of his vision.
We will don our over-sized sunglasses and take from Lagerfeld what it means to love what you do. He insisted that he would never retire as, for him, he designed like he breathed, and he continued to do so until his last breaths. His work was his life and he will continue to live on through the legacy left by the powdered footprints that he has left on the fashion world
“I like to imagine the world my way. I don’t want second-rate images of the world.”
Lagerfeld’s world of Cruise ships, Icebergs and catwalks of colossal importance are the types image of the fashion world that we would like to see maintained.