The Legacy of Coco Chanel

What’s the first thing that comes into your mind when you hear the name Coco Chanel? Most of you will probably know that she is the name behind the luxury brand Chanel.  However, did you know that she is more than just your regular French designer?  For all women out there, you can dress as comfortably as you like today, it’s all thanks to her.

Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel, more popularly known as Coco Chanel, is responsible in revolutionising women’s fashion.  She defied social norms.  She insisted on wearing and designing clothes that were comfortable and easy to live with.  As a result, she was able to alter the course of fashion in more ways than one.

Here are ways on how Coco Chanel was able to influenced and changed women’s fashion forever:

1. Trousers for Women

Image Source:  Styleclinic

It is hard to imagine that once upon a time, women don’t wear trousers.  Trousers were considered garments for men.  It was unacceptable for women to wear trousers; instead, women were expected to wear long dresses or skirts.

All this changed when Coco Chanel was photographed wearing sailor’s pants in a beach resort in Deauville, France.  From then on, trousers became a staple fashion for women.

2. Little Black Dress

Image Source: Vogue

Before the Little Black Dress was invented, women wore tightly-laced corsets, hoops and layers of petticoats during the Victorian era.  Moreover, the colour black was only worn during mourning.  The chic black sheath dress that Coco Chanel designed was revolutionary because of its striking silhouette and colour which defies all the norms during that time.

Today, the little black dress is a versatile piece that every woman should have in their closet.

3. Jersey

Image Source: Hungertv

Jersey is a knit fabric that was predominantly used as a fabric for men’s underwear.  Many of Coco Chanel’s rich clientele who were accustomed to luxurious fabrics such as silk and satin, were shocked by the choice of fabric.  She insisted on creating something simple, comfortable and practical.

I make fashion where women can live in, breathe in, feel comfortable in, and look younger in. – Coco Chanel

4. Fashion Jewelry

Image Source:  Flickr – The Coincidental Dandy

Fashion jewelries are fake or costume jewelries.  Although Chanel was not the one who invented the concept, she was the one who popularised the use of fake large pearls with chains and beads for everyday wear.

5. Designer Perfume

No. 5
Image Source: Perfumeboudoir

On the 5th day of the 5th month in 1921, the Chanel No. 5 was launched.  It was the first scent that smelt artificial made from unnatural ingredients.  During that time, perfumes were made from natural oils and floral components.

What do I wear to bed? Why, Chanel No. 5 of course. – Marilyn Monroe

6. Suits for Women

Image Source: Time

Chanel designed the suit for women who were trying to enter the male dominated work force after the war.  Made of knit materials, the suit was lightweight and flexible yet flattering because of the streamline skirt, metallic buttons and collarless necklines.  Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly and Jacqueline Kennedy were always seen wearing the Chanel suits.

Coco Channel recognised the need and the discomforts of women when it comes to dressing. She addressed these needs. She was not afraid to go against the norms. And this became her ticket to success.

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