Virgil Abloh, Donatella Versace, Kim Kardashian & More React to Karl Lagerfeld’s Death

Photo of Virgil Abloh, Donatella Versace, Kim Kardashian & More React to Karl Lagerfeld’s Death
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Legendary German fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld passed away this morning in Paris at the age of 85. One of the most influential figures in the industry, Lagerfeld’s career spanned over seven decades. At the time of his death, he was the creative director of Chanel and Fendi, as well as his eponymous label.

According to Chanel, Lagerfeld was admitted to the hospital on Monday night. The cause of death has not been revealed at this time. Rumors surrounding his health had been circulating for weeks, however, as the designer was absent from two Chanel fashion shows last month.

Lagerfeld was largely responsible for bringing Chanel to prominence upon taking the helm in 1983. Instantly recognizable due to his silver ponytail, sunglasses and fingerless gloves, he was not only respected by his peers and fans alike, but also beloved. In light of his passing, many industry figures and a slew of celebrities — from Virgil Abloh and Kim Kardashian, to Donatella Versace and Marc Jacobs — are paying their respects to the true icon.

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It is with deep sadness that the House of CHANEL announces the passing of Karl Lagerfeld, the Creative Director for the CHANEL Fashion House since 1983. An extraordinary creative individual, Karl Lagerfeld reinvented the brand’s codes created by Gabrielle Chanel: the CHANEL jacket and suit, the little black dress, the precious tweeds, the two-tone shoes, the quilted handbags, the pearls and costume jewelry. Regarding Gabrielle Chanel, he said, “My job is not to do what she did, but what she would have done. The good thing about Chanel is it is an idea you can adapt to many things.” A prolific creative mind with endless imagination, Karl Lagerfeld explored many artistic horizons, including photography and short films. The House of CHANEL benefited from his talent for all the branding campaigns related to Fashion since 1987. Finally, one cannot refer to Karl Lagerfeld without mentioning his innate sense of repartee and self-mockery. Alain Wertheimer, CEO of CHANEL, said: “Thanks to his creative genius, generosity and exceptional intuition, Karl Lagerfeld was ahead of his time, which widely contributed to the House of CHANEL’s success throughout the world. Today, not only have I lost a friend, but we have all lost an extraordinary creative mind to whom I gave carte blanche in the early 1980s to reinvent the brand.” Bruno Pavlovsky, President of Fashion at CHANEL, said: “Fashion show after fashion show, collection after collection, Karl Lagerfeld left his mark on the legend of Gabrielle Chanel and the history of the House of CHANEL. He steadfastly promoted the talent and expertise of CHANEL’s ateliers and Métiers d’Art, allowing this exceptional know-how to shine throughout the world. The greatest tribute we can pay today is to continue to follow the path he traced by – to quote Karl – ‘continuing to embrace the present and invent the future’.” Virginie Viard, Director of CHANEL’s Fashion Creation Studio and Karl Lagerfeld’s closest collaborator for more than 30 years, has been entrusted by Alain Wertheimer with the creative work for the collections, so that the legacy of Gabrielle Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld can live on.

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