Chanel's Karl Lagerfeld was right about fashion and wrong about women

Karl Lagerfeld, one of the greatest fashion designers of the twentieth century, died Tuesday in Paris. Recognized for saving Chanel when he became creative director, Lagerfeld was known not only for his stylistic brilliance but also for his frank and controversial comments.

Her perspective on fashion was invaluable, but her criticisms of women represent the darkest side of the industry.

The king of haute couture says the New York Times that fashion designers are craftsmen, not artists. While the parade aspect became more and more inaccessible, with beginner models that we would not see anywhere else, Lagerfeld emphasized the usefulness of fashion.

Designers "take themselves very seriously because they want to be taken as artists," he said. "I think we are craftsmen. It is an applied art. There is nothing wrong with that. If you want to make art, show it in a gallery. "

Despite his long-standing contracts with haute couture brands Chanel and Fendi, Lagerfeld embodies a realistic vision of clothing. "People buy dresses to be happy," he said. m said.

But the designer's legacy is tarnished by the way he has conformed to industry stereotypes. Fashion was perhaps more than a work of art for him, but not women.

Lagerfeld used to complain about women's bodies, whether they say they look ugly or need to lose weight. he called Adèle "a little too big", passing by talking about her beautiful voice, and later insult Plus size women: "Nobody wants to see round women on the podium."

He also murmured on the faces of others. In 2012, he insulted Pippa Middleton saying the Duchess of Cambridge is beautiful, but "her sister is struggling. I do not like the face of the sister. She should only show him back. "

Even worse, Lagerfeld rejected the objections to sexual harassment in the industry. Last spring, he told Numero magazine that he was "fed up" with the # MeToo movement. "If you do not want your pants pulled," he says, "do not become a model! Join a convent, there will always be a place for you in the convent."

Lillian Fallon, a New York-based fashion writer, said that Lagerfeld's contradictory legacy represented a broader trend. "Her comments on plus size women and models in general sum up somehow the elitist attitude of the fashion industry and the treatment of women as objects intended for consumption. "said Fallon. "He seemed to embody many of the negative stereotypes of the fashion industry."

Lagerfeld "really was not in the game to promote a more accurate representation of women and was not really interested in diversified beauty."

While the obituaries focus on his more humorous quotes – Lagerfeld once m said that "the jogging pants is a sign of defeat" – we should remember that it was only half-revolutionary. The designer's legacy was to break the fashion trends but to conform to her old tropes.

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