Karl Lagerfeld, Iconex Chanel, Christina Brinkley discussed on RadioLab


He was the creative director at Fendi as well. And he had his namesake label to boot. So he was busy guy. But more the point for this program Lagerfeld in no small way, built luxury fashion as we know it today. Christina Brinkley has covered fashion for years. It's good to have you on. I'm glad to be here. What do you think fashion in the fashion industry would look like today had Karl Lagerfeld come around? It's unimaginable. I literally I can't even imagine that he's been such a huge part both in developing the industry and creating affections for the industry. It's just inconceivable to imagine what it would be like without him. Well, so let's get back to that creating the modern fashion industry thing he went to Chanel thirty five thirty eight something years ago and took what has been described as a Mormon company surviving, unlike perfume and turn it into this four billion dollars a year enterprise. Yeah. At a time when there really weren't enterprises like that. And when they hired Karl Lagerfeld he dug into these archives that were decades old and found these items that Coco Chanel had designed for herself and her clients that they're now Iconex Chanel, but they were I think Lagerfeld went to left back in the eighties that they were only being worn by Parisian, doctor's wives. He meant that. As an insult helped me understand that how we. We get from Karl Lagerfeld revitalizing Chanel to a guy who then many many years later also works with the fast fashion house age name, and and of crosses that divide. And he did that I think in about two thousand and four before it became a thing. Now, we've been seeing target collections and H and M collections. If we can take our mindset, we used to think that that luxury and fast fashion could never cross the same bridge. And and he loved it. I mean, he took the very strange delight in of sort of tickling things that people didn't think should be tickled. So what happens now to the fashion industry that he's gone? I who who replaces him who has the name recognition in the brand identity. Well, it's interesting Karl Lagerfeld did so much. He was designing three brands multiple collections and also had a gazillion side gigs. He clearly had people at each of these brands that were doing a lot of heavy. Lifting. So if you think about the engineer who's taking over now for him. She may not be we don't really know her. She's probably not quite the show man that he was a my guess is. We're not going to see a lot. That's that different in the products that we might not see quite the same showy shows precis things like, you know, moving an iceberg from Sweden for a show that. Yeah, you covered him for years. What's your favorite memory? This is actually one of my most unforgettable moments in ever writing about fashion. I was in Paris and had agreed to meet him. An interview him about something. He was doing a Fendi and went to this address which turned out to be a tent on the side of the son river, and it was raining that day. He didn't wanna go inside. And do the cocktail hour things. So he dragged me outside in the rain, and we stood there with his Butler who was in a tuxedo and key had a silver tray with a crystal glass of diet coke and Carl and I stood under an umbrella and this poor fellow stood out in the rain and had the most delightful conversation, which he was really playing hooky for what he was supposed to be doing. It was actually turned out to be a great memory. Christina Brinkley has covered fashion, and and Karl Lagerfeld.

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