Photography Courtesy of Chanel

A Memorial Honours the Legacy of Karl Lagerfeld + More Fashion News This Week

Karl Lagerfeld's Paris memorial, Ralph Lauren receives an honorary knighthood and more.

Karl For Ever: A Paris Memorial Honours the Legacy of Karl Lagerfeld

When 85-year-old designer Karl Lagerfeld passed away last February, the whole world mourned. Five months after his death, a crowd of 2,500 guests gathered at the Grand Palais in Paris to mourn the life and legacy of a man who shaped fashion from the late 20th century and beyond. The memorial, organized jointly by the houses of Chanel, Fendi and Karl Lagerfeld, included a number of performances from superstars, to honour the designer’s legacy. Cara Delevingne recited poetry by Colette (one of Lagerfeld’s favourite authors), Tilda Swinton opined on clothing’s ability to “change our view of the world, and the world’s view of us,” and Helen Mirren read excerpts from “The World According to Karl” accompanied by a violinist. The production was conceived by theatre and opera director Robert Carsen, who told WWD he wanted the “joyful celebration of all things Karl” to be “full of life and unexpected.” His memory will not be forgotten soon. Read FASHION’s obituary of Karl Lagerfeld here. (WWD)

Photography Courtesy of Chanel

Heiress Gloria Vanderbilt Dead at 95

Gloria Vanderbilt, a great-great-granddaughter of railroad and steamship magnate Cornelius Vanderbilt, died this week at the age of 95. The New York Times described Gloria as a “magnetic society figure” whose compelling personality and delicate looks attracted the friendship of luminaries such as Charlie Chaplin and Diane Von Furstenburg and the romantic attention of suitors like Errol Flynn, Frank Sinatra, Gene Kelly, Howard Hughes and Marlon Brando. Famous since birth, at the age of 10, Gloria was a pawn in one of the nastiest child-custody battles of the 20th century between her mother and her aunt. The battle was covered mercilessly by the media and caused Gloria a great deal of trauma, but she persevered to live a dazzling life on her own terms. She posed as a model for Richard Avedon and Gordon Parks, and created her own $100 million dollar denim empire, Gloria Vanderbilt Jeans. Later in life, Vanderbilt became known for her creative talents, including fine art and writing. Vanderbilt wrote a total of six memoirs about her unparalleled life. (The New York Times)

Ralph Lauren Receives Honorary Knighthood for Services to Fashion

Ralph Lauren is the first American fashion designer to receive an honourary Knighthood of the British Empire, one of the UK’s highest accolades. Lauren is 79 years old and founded his eponymous company in 1967. He relinquished his role as CEO of the company in 2015. Lauren has dressed many members of the royal family over the course of his career, including Princess Diana, Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle. “I have always been inspired by the history, traditions and culture of Great Britain and the historic relationship our two countries have shared. This is one of the most meaningful honours bestowed at this very special moment in my 50th anniversary,” Lauren said in a statement to People magazine. He was awarded the honour by Prince Charles in a private ceremony earlier this week at Buckingham Palace. (The Guardian)

Virgil Abloh Delivers a Standout Collection for Louis Vuitton Men’s Spring 2020

Virgil Abloh is one of the most hyped designers currently working in the industry and today, this week he delivered a joyful, verdant collection that – at least in my opinion – finally lived up to expectations. Trim models including Ellery Harper (Laura Dern’s son!) and Blood Orange’s Dev Hynes walked down the runway in flowing pastel suits, neon waistcoats and quilted hoodies. But what really stood out was not the clothing, but the accessories. Triangular duffel bags, totes filled with nesting bouquets, crossbody bags attached to what appear to be kites, lent the collection an unprecedented level of whimsy. Some of the duffel bags were as large as carry-on suitcases, with only a top handle to carry them with. (Perhaps to demonstrate masculine feats of strength?) But then again, the best of fashion has never been practical; it exists to surprise and delight rather than dutifully serve. Abloh’s collection, with its men in skirts and filmy, transparent tops, does just that. (Vogue Runway)