Thursday, July 28, 2011

Guest Blogger Thursday: Becky Hatch on Coco Chanel

"A girl should be two things: classy and fabulous"
No, these words were not uttered by Carrie Bradshaw or any of her Sex and the City commrades.  Coco Chanel was the brains and beauty behind the simple mantra every woman should repeat to herself every day.  YOU are in fact both classy AND fabulous.  Although Ms Chanel ultimately became a brand and a style herself, her roots are much more humble than one would imagine.  It's difficult to write about Coco in such a short post; to try to explain every impact her iconic life had on make up, perfume and fashion would take pages upon pages.  But Coco's influence on me is more than just her designs. Yes, I will always remember my grandmother wearing Chanel No. 5.  I will also always remember Jackie Kennedy's pink Chanel suit that I have seen recreated and depicted everywhere as she holds her dying husband in the back of a convertible in Paris.  I drool over every Karl Lagerfield design that walks down the red carpet and winds up in People Magazine.  I own more than one little black dress and my favorite lipgloss is Chanel.  The sunglasses on my head and my favorite handbag...well they are knockoffs, but in my wildest daydreams I like to pretend they are real.  Chanel obviously changed the way we view fashion.  Clothes and make-up are not just materials on our bodies-they are a way of life.  It is, lovely ladies, how you carry yourself while wearing Chanel's designs (or anything for that matter) that make them classy and fabulous.  Chanel had an attitude about her that she was smart, talented and confident.  Chanel's designs were simple, clean and were more about the woman underneath. 
Chanel was not born into a glamourous life.  The second child, but first legitimate child in her family, and the oldest of six, there is not a lot known about her early life - mostly because she lied about it a lot.  They were poor, but after her mother died when she was twelve and her father took off, poor was looking good.  She learned to sew, and at eighteen began her life outside the orphanage.  She worked as a cabaret dancer and as a seamstress and eventually found herself the mistress of enough wealthy men that she had started her own business - with her lovers' money.  She turned out to be a good business investment, but she never settled down into married life.  She has been linked to dukes, naval captains, business men and perhaps Igor Stravinksy, the famed composer.  Her clients were just as illustrious and thus the House of Chanel was built.  Coco was a brilliant woman who changed the way we view beauty and fashion, who changed the world when a woman was more of an accessory than someone capable of designing and selling them to make a fortune on her own. 
Want to immitate Chanel's style?  A little black dress ( is a good place to find one!), menswear (I and or anything made out of jersey ( or are all styles and trends Chanel is responsible for!  Happy Shopping!

xoxo Becky

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