The Victoria and Albert Museum in London, renowned for its celebration of art, design, and performance, is set to host an extraordinary exhibition this September. This showcase will be the first of its kind in the UK, dedicated to the iconic fashion designer Gabrielle 'Coco' Chanel.
Featuring an impressive collection of over 200 outfits, as well as accessories, fragrances, and jewelry, this exhibition offers a captivating exploration of Chanel's groundbreaking contributions to fashion. It delves into her innovative design philosophy, which not only redefined elegance but also continues to shape contemporary women's fashion.
Inspired by the original Gabrielle Chanel. Fashion Manifesto exhibition at the Palais Galliera, Fashion Museum of the City of Paris, the V&A will reimagine this event, featuring rarely seen pieces from its own collection, alongside selections from Palais Galliera and the Patrimoine de CHANEL, the fashion House's heritage collections in Paris.
Highlights include Chanel's earliest surviving garment from 1916, original creations for the Ballets Russes in 1924, outfits worn by Hollywood stars such as Lauren Bacall and Marlene Dietrich, and a pioneering example of Chanel's evening trousers. The exhibition covers Chanel's journey from designing for herself to anticipating the needs of the modern, independent woman.
Through ten themed sections, it explores Chanel's groundbreaking use of fabric, innovative silhouettes, and revolutionary construction techniques. This exhibition offers a compelling glimpse into her influential sixty-year career, tracing her style evolution and enduring impact on fashion history.
Intriguingly, the exhibition also sheds light on Chanel's British influences, including her adoption of tweed, collaborations with British textile firms, and her textile factory in Huddersfield. These connections add a fascinating dimension to the story of this iconic fashion pioneer.