The Downey Legend

Karl Lagerfeld: The Death of a Legend

Francesca Ortiz, Writer

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The iconic fashion brand Chanel is known worldwide as an influential, sought out label Since 1983, Karl Lagerfeld has been the creative director for the company, reinventing several known designs with their own unique flare. Lagerfeld changed the industry with his designs, up until his death on Feb. 19.


Lagerfeld began his career in the fashion industry in 1955 after winning a design competition sponsored by International Wool Secretariat and took first place in the coat category. This competition propelled the young man into international fame. Lagerfeld went on to work for known brands such as Fendi, but will most be remembered by his work for Chanel.


Sophomore Pablo Hernandez identifies Karl Lagerfeld as one of the most recognizable figures in  the fashion industry.


“When I was first getting into fashion, the first name I heard of was Karl [Lagerfeld],” Hernandez said. “I believe he is one of the biggest, if not the biggest creative designer in the high end market. His impact will remain for many more years to come”


It was reported in Jan. 2019 that Lagerfeld was suffering of health issues. It was not until his death that the public learned that the fashion director passed away from pancreatic cancer.


Lagerfeld found muses in artists such as Madonna, Cara Delevingne, and G-Dragon. He was heavily involved with younger influencers which often inspired his work.


It was through his work that Lagerfeld inspired others as well. Senior Nahomy Barron is interested in fashion, and recalls how the designer inspired her.


“ I will always remember his unique approach to certain iconic Chanel items,” Barron said. “ It has inspired me to appreciate my own fashion and how I wear it.”


While Lagerfeld was also quoted saying some controversial things, such as calling Adele “fat”, he was known for having a blunt personality. Amy Ortega, 11, believes that it is up to the consumers to eliminate the toxicity in the industry.


“I think that the industry has normalized this kind of talk, ”Ortega said. “It is time to make a positive change that supports each other, not put others against each other.”


Karl Lagerfeld leaves behind a cat named Choupette, who is believed to be the sole recipient of his will.


About the Writer
Francesca Ortiz, Writer
Ready to immerse herself in a unique environment, Francesca Ortiz, 12, discusses her goal to attend New York University and begin a new life as a Business student. “The campus is a part of the city,” Ortiz stated. “It’s not a distinguished area and it blends in with the city. The transition from being a high school student to an adult makes NYU an ideal place to study at.”
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Karl Lagerfeld: The Death of a Legend