Coco Chanel wasn’t what people of her time would have called a striking beauty, but she was stylish and polished, elegant and with a sophisticated look. She came from a poor family and spent many years in an orphanage after her mother died when she was just twelve years old. Coco Chanel had a visionary mind and a revolutionary attitude. Her journey towards success had many ups and downs, but it only made her even more self-confident and determined to change old mentalities no longer useful.
A daring woman both in fashion and her own life she took her destiny into her own hands and she created for her the life she wanted. She never stopped believing in her dream and this in itself is a life lesson she gave us that we should be thankful for. She demonstrated that a woman with no help or resources from her family and with little support from her friends can create and rule an empire, even during a terrible time (World War I).
Wondering what else she did for you and for all of us? Have a look at top 7 things you can thank Coco Chanel for:
1. The bob (“carre”) haircut – freedom from long hair that was a must for women back then.
2. Freedom from corsets – she believed in freedom of movement and in tailored suits that combined successfully feminine textures with masculine cuts. Coco also preferred sport dresses and rejected completely the corsets that were a must in her time.
3. The over the knee length skirt – she designed skirts that were shorter in length than the requirements of her époque, but she wanted the skirts to cover the knees as she found the knees ugly.
4. Chanel no. 5 perfume – an iconic perfume with a long history behind it as it was launched in 1920! Are you curious about the “5” in the name? For Coco Chanel, this number had a special meaning so she named the perfume like this for good luck.
5. The Chanel IT bag – with a strap so women can have the liberty to use their hands. The small black bag with the double C sign and a metallic strap is still a coveted luxury item even in our days. And this is the living proof that some fashion items never really go out of fashion.
6. The little black dress – the dress that is suitable for all occasions, is comfortable, elegant and sexy, Coco invented the concept in 1926 and we still cherish it today as the LBD has became over the years one of the must-haves of our wardrobes.
7. Priceless life lessons – with her bob haircut and her little stylish black dress, Coco Chanel was no ordinary woman. She followed no rules or time conventions and she answered to no one except herself. She was never conventional or willing to please, but because of her attitude and because she was a fighter, she inspired women back then and even now to be the best woman they can be and strive to make their dreams come true.
We have many things that came from her that we should be grateful for. Here are some of her inspiring quotes that can change the way you see life and fashion:
- “A girl should be two things: classy and fabulous.”
- “In order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different.”
- “Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance.”
- “Success is most often achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.”
- “I don’t care what you think about me. I don’t think about you at all.”
- “My life didn’t please me, so I created my life.”
- “Fashion changes, but style endures.”
- “I don’t understand how a woman can leave the house without fixing herself up a little – if only out of politeness. And then, you never know, maybe that’s the day she has a date with destiny. And it’s best to be as pretty as possible for destiny.”
- “You can be gorgeous at thirty, charming at forty, and irresistible for the rest of your life.”
Least, but not last, we must thank Coco Chanel for introducing to the world a new woman. A woman that moves freely, that appreciates simplicity and refinement. A woman that is able to think for herself, to take decisions for her life and to never give up when confronted with life’s obstacles.
Written by Anne Matea