*Fashion icon and creative director of Chanel Karl Lagerfeld died Tuesday morning at the American Hospital just outside Paris after being admitted the day before, a source at the French fashion house confirmed. He was 85.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Lagerfeld had been in poor health which caused him to be noticeably absent from Chanel’s spring 2019 haute couture show, held Jan. 22 at the Grand Palais in Paris. The Guardian on Tuesday citied sources close to Chanel that Lagerfeld had died but the cause of death wasn’t announced.
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Rest in peace, Karl. Love forever from your TeamKarl family. pic.twitter.com/8uSidZUhJm
— KARL LAGERFELD (@KarlLagerfeld) February 19, 2019
WWD wrote, “Karl Lagerfeld is almost as synonymous with Chanel as Coco Chanel herself.”
“I design like I breathe,” Lagerfeld said. “You don’t ask to breathe — it just happens.”
In his more than 30 years at Chanel, Lagerfeld collaborated with several pop culture stars, including Madonna, Nicki Minaj, Justin Bieber, Pharrell Williams, Miley Cyrus, Willow Smith, Kendall Jenner, Cara Delevingne and Kristen Stewart.
“Karl has always, from the very beginning, made me feel like being myself was the right thing to do. And in [the fashion] world, that is a rarity,” Stewart told V magazine in 2017. “He’s a compulsive and obsessive artist, and it’s contagious. And he’s kind. He is who he is for a reason. I feel so lucky to be in his space so often.”
As noted by THR, when it came to his work ethic, “Lagerfeld was devoted for life.”
“I think I’m pretty lucky that I can do what I like best in perfect conditions. I don’t have to fight with anybody. You know my contracts with Fendi and Chanel are for life?” he told Vogue. “And I don’t feel tired at all.”
He also was known for dropping witty one-liners like, “I don’t do internet,” “I hate ugly people,” “Sweatpants are a sign of defeat,” “I have spies all over the place” and “I am like a caricature of myself.”
As reported by Sky News, influencers from the fashion world have expressed their sorrow online at his death.
Designer Donatella Versace posted a photo of herself and Lagerfeld on Instagram, writing: “Karl your genius touched the lives of so many, especially Gianni and I.
“We will never forget your incredible talent and endless inspiration. We were always learning from you.”
British fashion designer Henry Holland tweeted: “To design is to breathe, so if I can’t breathe I’m in trouble” RIP @KarlLagerfeld #karlargerfeld.”
A statement from Caroline Rush, chief executive of the British Fashion Council, said: “We are deeply saddened to learn the news of Karl Lagerfeld’s passing today.
“His unrivalled contribution to the fashion industry changed the way women dress and perceive fashion.
“He inspired generations of young designers and will continue to do so. His tenure of over thirty years, saw his unique vision transform Chanel from a classic French house into a global superbrand.
“It is a great loss for our industry. Our thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.”