Design Philosophies Of Coco Chanel And Elsa Schiaparelli

Great Essays
After the First World War, the public suffered the consequences of the Great Depression. Fashion became more compromising and subtle, reflecting the tough social and political situation. Moving away from the daring style of 1920s, many designers adapted a romantic and feminine silhouette look in their design. For this essay, I will explore Coco Chanel and Elsa Schiaparelli’s design philosophy, their rivalry, and last but not least, how their creations seem to overlaps during the 1930s to 1950s. Being on of the most influential woman that liberated women from the constraints of corseted silhouette, Chanel works in 1930s manifested simplicity where she introduced trousers, her first signature Chanel suit and the Little Black Dress to the world. …show more content…
Chanel believed in liberating women from the constraints of a corseted silhouette, creating a society that could accept casual, chic and sporty garments. Her success came from the fact that the garments she made “adapted first to her own needs, and then generalized their use” (Leymarie 1987, p. 7) for the market. By saying that, what she meant was that she created the garment because she realized that she needed them in her life. Others only manufactured it because they agreed that she had created an evolutional piece of garment that everyone else needed as well. It was her philosophy that made her a successful couturier. Chanel modeled her own creations by wearing them to meet her clients for her business and when she has to attend social events. Her actions allowed her to set trends and evoked a change in the fashion industry during the 1920s. Unlike Chanel, Schiaparelli had the habit of inviting artists to work with her. At the peak of her career in the fashion industry, Schiaparelli dominated the society with new textures, materials and technology. Instead of focusing on the craftsmanship of the garment, her works were often galvanized by leitmotif, surrealist artwork or the idea of modifying women status in the society (Evans, 2005). She mentioned in Shocking Life “Dress designing, incidentally, is to me not a profession but an art. I found that it was a most difficult and unsatisfying art, because as …show more content…
Chanel No. 5 was launched in 1921, named after Chanel’s lucky number whereas Schiaparelli’s Shocking was launched in 1936 alongside with her Shocking Pink dress. Perfume acts as a supplement for fashion garments and on women themselves. It alters a women scent, empowering her to feel more confident in expressing herself. When a fashion houses produce a scent, people tend to associate the scent with the bran, it serves as a reminder of the fashion house despite the tough times. As the war advances, perfumes became the most profitable business as the war caused a shortage of fabric and women spending power

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