Coco & Igor

Saw this film a couple of weeks ago now. It’s beautiful. The music is stunning, the visuals are dripping with style (not in a self-aggrandizing way, but in a way Coco would be proud of) and Coco Chanel was a truly remarkable woman. Here are some of her words of wisdom as found online:

1.“To be irreplaceable one must always be different.”

2. “Some people think luxury is the opposite of poverty. It is not. It is the opposite of vulgarity.”

3. “Fashion fades, only style remains.”

4. “Elegance is refusal.”

5. “It’s always better to be slightly underdressed.”

6. “Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say, and not giving a damn.”

7. “Success is often achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.”

8. “There is time for work, and time for love. That leaves no other time”

9. “Nature gives you the face you have at twenty; it is up to you to merit the face you have at fifty.”

10. “Anyone can be the duchess of Westminster, but there is only one Chanel.” (It remains a mystery whether or not the Duke of Westminster ever proposed to Chanel; it was beside the point for her.)

Coco was stylish because of her poise, self belief and simple elegance. Her perhaps single-minded pursuit of her own aesthetic was carried out with such conviction, such attention to detail and unwillingness to compromise, that its overwhelming confidence becomes almost impossible disagree with. Coco’s tailoring is structured yet relaxed, delicate and feminine, yet strong and not afraid of androgony. Her passion and control suits Stravinsky’s music perfectly. (NB: That is not Igor Stravinsky in the photo with Chanel above).

Tailoring has been inspiring me lately. See wikipedia here for different methods of stitching and bringing together pieces of fabric. It is decoration on a structural scale, often unecessary, but forms the basis of style and the way clothes sit on our bodies. How the thing relates to the site, if you will. I’m sure I will be writing more on this later.

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