Home >Lounge >Features >Karl Lagerfeld: 5 things to know

Born in Germany, Lagerfeld moved to Paris in 1947, at the age of 14. His first big break came in 1954 when he won a design competition at the International Wool Secretariat, which has since come to be known as the International Woolmark Prize.


After a few years of working with designers such as Pierre Balmain, Jean Patou and Valentino, Lagerfeld assumed the position of head designer at Fendi in 1965. In 1983, he was appointed the artistic director of Chanel, and he launched his eponymous label a year later. Lagerfeld helmed the design of all three brands till his death. He also created a new brand, Karl, with Net-a-porter, in 2012.


Lagerfeld, who was also a photographer, began shooting his own campaigns in 1987. He shot for Chanel, Fendi and his own labels, collaborated with fashion publications, and many of his photographs have been compiled into books.


Fast-fashion brand H&M’s design collaborations are an annual fixture today—Lagerfeld was the first designer to collaborate with it, in 2004. His other notable collaborations include design stints with Coca-Cola, Faber-Castell and Vans.


An avid reader, Lagerfeld founded the Parisian bookshop 7L in 1999, and the publishing company 7L Edition a year later. 

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