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Chanel: Fashion as Romance

   Articles of Chanel clothing, as we know them today, are fresh, forever relevant, and always the choice of the infinite “it” girl but, in the days of Gabrielle (Coco), Chanel was the choice of a woman with a big heart and an even bigger outlook: a love-seeking lady from the very beginning of her days. Her first collections were filled with items for the complete wardrobe of an ever-elegant mademoiselle who was to accompany her timeless love in travel, luxury and the best lifestyle around. I mean, the little black dress—which was somewhat of a precedent at the time— turned into a signature of the quintessential woman: a woman both worldly and ready. The classic 2.55 bag is still today’s style star’s classic grab for purpose, punch and statement while the former renaissance woman grabbed hers for confirmation.

   Coco lived a life filled with romance after adventure while dating the era’s most sparkly male figures. She was a woman with the inner desire to bask in the beauty of a heart- filled interaction, temporary or not. The woman Coco dreamed of becoming was stitched into every original piece; she reflected this vision of quaint opportunity in her creations. The Parisian way, no? It’s said  that Coco Chanel intentionally placed miniature pockets inside bags for the storage of love letters. A gal with so many lavish romances in her lifetime knew a thing or two about attracting the right kind of attention; even the brand’s signature camellia fleur dates back to its origin when it was worn by mistresses to wave opportunity at onlookers; the flower and its meaning was introduced to Coco by the love of her life, Boy Chapel. He is said to be the only male influence behind Chanel.

   Although a hopeless romantic in her time, Coco aided women who dressed very conservatively and restrained during the 1920’s fashion era. Coco Chanel brought effortlessness, relaxed silhouettes, and wit to the fashion scene. She would repeatedly give women the gift of femininity revolutionized. All in all, our dear Coco not only gave us the gift of elegance in our own skin but she embedded compelling romance in every piece she designed (the trait of a woman willing to connect with herself or true love, if you will). I’d still swear by a tweed Chanel blazer over a t- shirt for the ideal first date look any day. There’s something about a Chanel anything on your shoulders that teleports you to roaming the cobblestone streets in Paris looking for love or just looking lovely. Your choice!

 

by Cristina Pimentel