Chanel bags are simple, chic accessories that will certainly never go out of style. They are an investment piece that every girl wants to own, and the Chanel Classic Flap Bag is famous in its own right. But have you ever wondered how exactly Chanel bags gained their notoriety?
In today’s blog, you’ll get the 411 on how Chanel bags became so iconic.
The Early Life of Coco Chanel
Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel, who would later become known worldwide as Coco Chanel, was born in Saumur, France on August 19, 1883. Chanel’s early years were far from glamorous – she was born into poverty and later abandoned by her father following her mother’s untimely death at age 12. She spent the remainder of her childhood being raised by nuns in an orphanage that taught her how to sew. Little did she know, this skill would come to define her in the future.
Coco Chanel’s life as a young woman consisted of working as a café singer for a few years and becoming associated with a handful of wealthy men. In 1913, she met Arthur Capel who played an instrumental part in helping her open her first shop in Deauville, France, where she sold simple sportswear like jersey sweaters. People began to take notice of her simplistic fashion styles within the first five years of her business, and it was only uphill from there.
A Rising Star
In 1921, Chanel came in contact with Ernst Beaux, who was recognized as one of the most talented perfume creators at the time. He helped her come up with the signature scent that would become the financial basis of her empire – Chanel No. 5. Chanel was the first major fashion designer to dabble in the perfume world, and her sleek packaging made the product that much more successful.
Being the risk-taker she was, Chanel then went on to introduce the Chanel suit – a well-fitted skirt with a collarless jacket, and the little black dress. Both of these designs were revolutionary at the time as no one had borrowed elements from men’s wear before or dared to wear black outside a funeral setting.
Even though Chanel had already done enough to make fashion history with her endeavours during the 1920s, she still had more iconic fashion items up her sleeve.
The Introduction of the Chanel Bag
Coco Chanel took her first swing at designing bags in 1929. All the bags sold to upper-class women during that time period were hand-carried, and Chanel’s bags fell into that category. Having to haul around a purse in your hand at all times was quite cumbersome, and Chanel realized the impracticality of this design.
In February 1955, she debuted yet another revolutionary fashion piece – a shoulder-carried handbag. Thanks to Chanel’s design, it was finally acceptable for women of with high social status to carry a bag over their shoulders!
Chanel’s Later Years
Chanel continued to grow her brand and throughout the rest of her life and became as well known for her fashion pieces as her quotes, some of which include, “A girl should be two things: classy and fabulous.” and, “A woman who cuts her hair is about to change her life.” She never married, and another one of her famous sayings she lived by was, “I never wanted to weigh more heavily on a man than a bird.”
On January 10, 1971, Coco Chanel passed away from a heart attack at her apartment in the Hotel Ritz. Hundreds of admirers gathered at the Church of the Madeleine to honour the fashion icon, many of whom sported Chanel suits.
Chanel Bags Today
In 1984, a little over a decade after Coco Chanel passed away, Karl Lagerfeld took over her company and continued her legacy. He introduced the iconic interlocking CC locks to her purses and made sure her name was always recognizable with that logo.
Today, the Chanel Classic Flap Bag is considered to be one of the most important accessories in the history of fashion and its signature flap top is recognized around the world.
Why Love Your Purse
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