An Ode to Coco Chanel’s Personal Style, From Tweed Suits to Fur Coats
Try as Naomi Campbell and Tilda Swinton might, no one has ever quite worn a Chanel suit like Coco Chanel herself. Born on this day in 1883 as Gabrielle Bonheur, Chanel entered a convent-run orphanage at age 12, which was where she learned to sew—and thereby, of course, sowing the seeds of her legendary namesake label, which would come to practically define the word “chic.” Still, it wasn’t just revolutionary couture that resulted from the tightly run ship that was her atelier on rue Cambon in Paris. It also produced Chanel the couturière and icon. Throughout her lifetime, she was almost impossibly poised, to the point that she could be found wearing her signature pearls even when simply lounging in her apartment. (It was her celebrity that helped her hide the documented yet never-confirmed reports that she was a Nazi agent.) In celebration of her birthday, take a look back at her inimitable style, as captured by the surrealist fashion photographer Horst P. Horst and more, here.