Thursday, August 19, 2010

{designer profile: coco chanel}

Happy Birthday to Mme Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel! In honor of the birthday of one of the greatest fashion icons in history I thought I would dedicate a post to all things Chanel {including her personal homes, since this is a décor blog of course!}.

Chanel was a pioneering French fashion designer whose modernist style, menswear-inspired fashions, and pursuit perfection made her such an influential figure in 20th-century fashion.

I am quite smitten with Chanel products. My personal signature scent is Mademoiselle Chanel, if I could only have 1 bottle of perfume this would be it!

One of the most interesting historical novels I have read is 'The Collection,' by Gioia Diliberto, which looks at the behind the scenes life in the haute couture workrooms of the imperious Coco Chanel herself. And a MUST watch: Coco Avant Chanel.

Lets take a look at three of her personal interiors: the Hotel Ritz suite she lived in, the maison de couture at 31 rue Cambon {now the flagship shop}, and the apartment she owned above her couture house.

The suite at the Hotel Ritz:

Coco Chanel resided in a suite at the Hotel Ritz Paris for over 30 years. It is now one of the most expensive suites to rent on the market {$4,000 and $5,000 USD per night}.

The foyer is exquisite, just look at those floors!

You even get Chanel products in the bathroom!


The Couture House on 31 rue Cambon:

Coco Chanel had a mirrored staircase installed that spirals to the top of the building. The angled mirrors were intentionally placed so that when they were preparing for shows, she could view what was happening on almost every floor from the top, and she was able to see the reaction of the audience!

The apartment on 31 rue Cambon:

Coco owned an apartment atop the flagship Chanel location, but she never resided here. She actually used this apartment for entertaining and for interviews etc. How fab!

How it looked then:

And now:

 I love the abundance of chinoiserie-inspired screens:
I don't think any one can deny that this woman had serious style through and through. Happy Birthday Coco!


David Toms said...

Stunning post! Not much more can be said. Happy Birthday Coco said...

What a fantastic post, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Thanks so much.

Sandy K

Renee@Modus Operandi Designs said...

She's such an icon! I agree with your fragrance choice. You just can't go wrong with anything Channel.
Gorgeous pictures. Everything is so timeless and synonymous with good taste.

Brandi said...

Great Post! I love the history of fashion and especially Chanel. I hear the Dallas museum has a few furniture pieces of hers but I've yet to check it out!

Kathysue said...

Nancy, amazing post ,love this. True style transcends time doesn't it. Her apartment looks as current today as it did back in the day. Amazing!! I am a lover of #5!! Kathysue

The Zhush said...

Stunning! She is an inspiration for sure, adore this amazing icon of fashion, and loved reading this post! Hope you are having a fabulous time during your travels, look forward to reading all about them!

Karena said...


A fashion and style icon! My very first perfume, Chanel #5 Perfume!

Art by Karena

splendid little thrills said...

I just found your blog and I love it! I also love this movie and all things Chanel.

theLENNOXX said...

I'm in love with the shiny marble floors =) Perfection!

Sarah Klassen said...

Oh, splendid! Wouldn't it be a dream to stay there? *sigh* wow...


p.s hope you're having an amazing time! Cannot wait to hear all about it!!

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