Famous People of the 1920s: Coco Chanel
by: Zaria C. Jordan
Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel, daughter of Albert Chanel and Jeanne Devolle was born on August 19, 1883, in Saumur, France. Gabrielle had the religious views of a Catholic and was for a democracy government. At the Hotel Ritz where she lived is where she died on January 10,1971.
About Me (Coco Chanel)
I am a famous fashion designer but I have not always been so fortunate to do what I love. My mother died when I was only a child, so my father decided to place me in an orphanage where I was raised by nuns. Forever I am grateful to have known them because being raised by them was the foundation of my successful life's work as they taught me to sew. The name Coco came from when I was singing in clubs; Coco meaning "kept woman" in french and it just stuck ever since. Two influential men in the start of my fashion career were Etienne Balsan and Authur "Boy" Capel. Etienne Balsan offered me a millinery business located in Paris when I was only 20 years old. Not too much later I met some Authur Capel, he was much wealthier and helped me to open my first shop selling hats in "Paris's Rue Cambon" in 1910.
The start of my Fortune began when I decided to make a dress out of an old jersey on a cool day. So many people had a positive response to what I had put together, I had no choice but to offer to make them one. Business for me started booming during the 1920s when I launched Chanel No.5 (my first perfume), legendary Chanel suit with colorless jacket with a fitted skirt, and the little black dress. Coco designed costumes for the Ballets Russes and for the famous play Orphee. Through the process of my career I became good friends with Pablo Picasso and Igor Stravinsky. Hans Gunther von Dincklage, was a German military officer who I had developed relations with, my involvement with him lead to me being able to keep my apartment at the Hotel Ritz. Though I was happy with my German military officer after going through a court trial and being known as betraying my country for being involved with a Nazi officer I left and spent years in Switzerland. My time away was preparation for my major come back in the fashion industry at 70 years old. Never did I marry never did I have kids yet I still found myself fortunate enough to have a major successful and glamorous life.
- " I never wanted to weigh more heavily on a man than a bird."
- "Success is ofter achieved by those who don't know that failure is inevitable."
-" There have been several Duchesses of Westminster but there is only one Chanel."
3 Things I want to know:
- Did their legacy live on through children or other family members?
- How was your person looked at in the community?
- What were some major hard times in their life?