marina

65 months ago

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Karl Lagerfeld: freedom, motorcycles, fashion

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Karl Lagerfeld was a giant in the fashion world; the charismatic, photographer, fashion hero was obsessed with motorcycle culture and even had a passion for… road safety

Karl Lagerfeld, the German, self-taught master, who referred to himself as a “complete improvisation", changed French fashion and inspired millions with his artistry and craft over decades, died this morning in Paris at the age of 85.

Lagerfeld had an understanding of motorcycle culture and how it sells everything. He also understood the motorcycle's ability to inspire descent and the need for the former in spurring creativity in society at large. Read: sometimes you need to be loud, get dirty and go fast to breed anew. Discuss.

Karl Lagerfeld Commissioned Triton Motorcycle for Chanel

Karl Lagerfeld Commissioned Triton Motorcycle for Chanel

Without a doubt, motorcycle culture and fashion go wayback. Mods and Rockers case and point. Motorcycle culture has always been part fashion, part bike. The motorcycle jacket, once banned on American TV for its subversive iconography, has always been the decided epitome of capturing freedom. The motorcycle jacket is everywhere in fashion. It's simply the only way the common human can appropriate motorcycle freedom and danger without the consequence, and without the fear.

No, Karl Lagerfeld was not the last to be inspired by the freedom machine, but he was the first to bring motorcycle culture to luxury ready-to-wear when creative director at the house of Chanel.

Only months before his death, his very last motorcycle inspiration was a master stroke in youth culture featuring Kaia Gerber, the 17-year-old model--who is the daughter of Cindy Crawford and Rande Gerber. She drooled when KL asked her to collaborate with him on a motorcycle jacket. Released in late 2018, the jacket sold out in minutes.

Kaia Gerber, daughter of Cindy Crawford wearing the motorcycle jacket resulting from the collaboration with Karl Lagerfeld

Kaia Gerber, daughter of Cindy Crawford wearing the motorcycle jacket resulting from the collaboration with Karl Lagerfeld

A generation earlier, Karl Lagerfeld draped Linda Evangelista in a Chanel's motorcycle jacket, complete with fishnet stockings and damn great boots. KL understood how sexy a motorcycle can make you feel, and you didn't need to ride it or even sit on it, just stand near it to reap the benefits.

Linda Evangelista wearing Karl Lagerfeld for Channel motorcycle jacket and boots

Linda Evangelista wearing Karl Lagerfeld for Channel motorcycle jacket and boots

One of the most opinionated men in fashion, Karl Lagerfeld published many photography books; he was also an actor, known to play a caricature of himself. But what you may not know is that KL also turned in an advertisement for road safety with this terrific message: "It's yellow, it's ugly, it doesn't match anything, but it can save lives."

Karl Lagerfeld road safety vest

Karl Lagerfeld road safety vest

Lagerfeld for Ruby helmets, while not so safe, was collaboration with Parisian high-end helmet designer Les Ateliers Ruby, together they create a line of helmets with built-in iPods. Unfortunately, while a great experiment in high-fashion motorcycle safety equipment, Ruby went bust in 2014, selling DOT, open face helmets for prices in excess of $1400 each. I like the furry one.

Lagerfeld Ruby Motorcycle Helmets

Lagerfeld Ruby Motorcycle Helmets

The superwoman, according to Karl Lagerfeld, was full of adventure, filled with mischief and a Ducati 750ss between her legs. Too bad he didn't go all the way and give Keira Knightley the protection she needed with built in armour for that catsuit… he too was captured by the fantasy, but the lack of safety betrays his truth: clearly KL didn't ride. Here she is… Coco Mademoiselle: Behind The Scenes.

Keira Knightley Sulla Ducati 750ss

Keira Knightley Sulla Ducati 750ss

Coco Mademoiselle: Behind The Scenes

Merci pour tout. Rest in peace Monsieur Karl.

Karl Lagerfeld dies in Paris at the age of 85

Karl Lagerfeld dies in Paris at the age of 85

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jawadahmed

4 months ago

Through fashion, we can honor our heritage, celebrate our culture, and pay tribute to the traditions and values that shape who we are. Geedup Hoodie

TristanGrinage

6 months ago

Dive into BlogVox for the latest fashion insights and trends. Your go-to source for chic stories and style tips! 👗💫 #FashionBlog #StyleTalk

L8D8

63 months ago

Nice! Thanks. I think he probably wanted to inspire dissent and not descent, but you paid him a great tribute here.

lanhet

65 months ago

The absolute epitome of futility and vacuity. If Lagerfeld ever had any interest in motorcycles, it was simply to help him promote his culture of image without substance, where his zombies would buy his crap without hesitation, just to be part of the "beautiful people". Sad that such an icon of dumb emptiness should be associated with an icon of freedom, but I guess he represents the world we now live in...

devon

65 months ago

Awesome piece, I own some KL stuff and its my fav. I absolutely love the jacket with <span>Linda Evangelista and yes, those boots! In France everyone must have a safety vest in their car, its the law but I had no idea he did that, ad very cool. Thanks for this piece.</span>