Karl Lagerfeld (German, b.1933) is a well-known fashion designer, and the head of fashion houses Chanel and Fendi, as well as the founder of his own label. Born in Hamburg, Germany, early on, Lagerfeld showed an interest in design and fashion. At the age of 14, he moved to Paris, winning first prize in a design competition. Lagerfeld was soon offered a job with French designer
In 1983, Lagerfeld became the creative director and head designer for Chanel, where he shook up the fashion world by creating his own ready-to-wear line called Karl Lagerfeld, along with a lower-priced sporty line, KL. In 1987, he received France’s Golden Thimble award for his Chanel haute couture collection. In 1992, Lagerfeld returned to Chloe, where his first collection was an enormous critical success. During this time, Lagerfeld launched his own label, which developed a reputation for high quality fit at affordable prices.
In 1997, Lagerfeld stepped down from his position as chief designer at Chloe in order to concentrate more on his own signature line. In 2005, Lagerfeld sold his label to Tommy Hilfiger.
In addition to his work in fashion, he has created costumes for La Scala in Milan, and for films such as The Sun Also Rises, Babette’s Feast, Viva le Vie, and Le General de L’Armee Morte. He has also worked in the field of decorative art, restoring a number of old mansions, including the Chateau de Penhoët in Brittany. He is also an accomplished photographer, shooting fashion advertisements for both Chanel and for his House of Lagerfeld.
He currently lives and works in Paris.