I can attest to these two quotations by Coco Chanel on fashion:
"Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening. "
"Look for the woman in the dress. If there is no woman, there is no dress."
This is what made the brand name Chanel classy and timeless. She understood the abstract concept called 'fashion', and saw the power of this concept in its ubiquity. To Chanel, fashion was an idea labeling anything - be it a garment, an object, or even a scene - inspirational and creative. In that sense, fashion had to be relevant to us - more specifically, to women wearing her designs - and the world we live in.
In a sea of mass-produced fast fashion and fads, her saying especially rings true. Yes, there are great designers out there working on their projects and collections based on this full-proof principle, and yet, the mass is still consumed with the distorted image of fashion focused solely on the final product not the design behind it. Some just do not seem to know how to distinguish 'something quick and trendy' from a well-thought-out design that encompasses the most interesting happenings of our lives or what I call the luxury of life.
Chanel's concept of fashion was bringing the best out of the wearer through her garments. She was most concerned with providing the woman walking into her store with a design that flatters her, and more importantly, brings the spotlight to her character rather than burying it in the glitz of the garment.
Understanding fashion and having a personal style can make people more interesting. But it is important to note that it's only half about the actual garment. The more interesting other half lies in the construction, fabric, design, and the story behind the garment. Matching this combination perfectly with an appropriate, sensible style is what gives an extra glow to the wearer.
Something extra - two quotes by Coco Chanel I try to live by:
"The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud."
"A girl should be two things: classy and fabulous."
The latter is my all-time favorite.
Try to live by that, it isn't easy, but it's surely tons of fun.