Here’s why Karl Lagerfeld won’t be having a funeral

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  • His ‘wishes will be respected’

    It was announced this week that iconic fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld has died aged 85.

    The news of his death comes after weeks of ill health, with Karl – the artistic director of CHANEL – missing his catwalk bow at the end of the most recent CHANEL Couture Show in Paris.

    ‘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,’ CHANEL announced in a statement, prompting an outpouring of love from a long list of high profile names.

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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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    And while there has been speculation around when and where a funeral would take place, it has now been announced that there won’t be a formal service honouring the iconic designer’s life.

    The reason? It was never one of the designer’s wishes.

    ‘I do not want a burial, nothing,’ he previously explained. ‘I arrived one day, and one day I will leave. But let it be said, there is no urgency. I am like Madame Porgès, who lived during the Belle Epoque. When she died, people said that she was the only survivor of a world she was not part of. Well, me, that’s it, this world, I was not really part of it.’

    Karl Lagerfeld quotes

    He went on to reveal that he kept the ashes of both his late partner Jacques de Bascher and his late mother in a ‘secret place’, announcing ‘One day, we will add mine’.

    The designer also planned to scatter the ashes of his cat, Choupette, in the same area if she were to die before him.

    A spokesperson for Karl Lagerfeld’s brand has confirmed that regarding a funeral and cremation, Karl’s ’wishes will be respected’.

    Our thoughts are with Karl’s loved ones.

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