Early on Tuesday morning, news broke that Karl Lagerfeld passed away at 85. The Creative Director of both Fendi and Chanel for over 35 years, Karl Lagerfeld was always on the cutting edge of what was happening in fashion. His controversial designs and ad campaigns, along with his instantly recognizable personal style, made him one of the fashion industry’s ultimate icons.
Rumors of health issues had been circulating in recent weeks, especially after Karl was absent from Chanel’s Spring Haute Couture show last month in Paris. Regardless, everyone was caught off guard with the news of his passing, and dozens of celebrities and fashion figures have offered heartfelt tributes. Here are some of the best Instagram tributes to Karl Lagerfeld, fitting of his massive legacy.
Lindsay Lohan might not always keep it cool, but she kept it sweet and simple in the wake of Karl’s passing. This really is a lovely photo of them together, and her message is sincere and to the point.
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It is with deep sadness that the House of CHANEL announces the passing of Karl Lagerfeld, the Creative Director for the CHANEL Fashion House since 1983. An extraordinary creative individual, Karl Lagerfeld reinvented the brand’s codes created by Gabrielle Chanel: the CHANEL jacket and suit, the little black dress, the precious tweeds, the two-tone shoes, the quilted handbags, the pearls and costume jewelry. Regarding Gabrielle Chanel, he said, “My job is not to do what she did, but what she would have done. The good thing about Chanel is it is an idea you can adapt to many things.” A prolific creative mind with endless imagination, Karl Lagerfeld explored many artistic horizons, including photography and short films. The House of CHANEL benefited from his talent for all the branding campaigns related to Fashion since 1987. Finally, one cannot refer to Karl Lagerfeld without mentioning his innate sense of repartee and self-mockery. Alain Wertheimer, CEO of CHANEL, said: “Thanks to his creative genius, generosity and exceptional intuition, Karl Lagerfeld was ahead of his time, which widely contributed to the House of CHANEL’s success throughout the world. Today, not only have I lost a friend, but we have all lost an extraordinary creative mind to whom I gave carte blanche in the early 1980s to reinvent the brand.” Bruno Pavlovsky, President of Fashion at CHANEL, said: “Fashion show after fashion show, collection after collection, Karl Lagerfeld left his mark on the legend of Gabrielle Chanel and the history of the House of CHANEL. He steadfastly promoted the talent and expertise of CHANEL’s ateliers and Métiers d’Art, allowing this exceptional know-how to shine throughout the world. The greatest tribute we can pay today is to continue to follow the path he traced by – to quote Karl – ‘continuing to embrace the present and invent the future’.” Virginie Viard, Director of CHANEL’s Fashion Creation Studio and Karl Lagerfeld’s closest collaborator for more than 30 years, has been entrusted by Alain Wertheimer with the creative work for the collections, so that the legacy of Gabrielle Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld can live on.
Karl is best-known as the Creative Director of Chanel, a position he began in 1983. He was given total control of the brand from the start, and helped bring Coco Chanel’s classic vision into the modern era. Under his leadership, Chanel has become one of the biggest global fashion brands, so he’s left some big shoes to fill.
In addition to Chanel and his own Karl Lagerfeld brand, Karl designed for Fendi for more than 50 years. The brand kept it simple in their official tribute post, which is probably how he would’ve wanted it.
From one icon to another. Naomi Campbell has spent decades at the top of the modeling game, and she obviously had a close connection with Karl. This caption kind of broke my heart, not gonna lie.
Kim Kardashian West
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We lost a true legend!!!! You were such an inspiration to the world! You shot my first fashion shoot and I was so nervous to work with such an icon! The world is so much chicer because you existed! I am beyond honored to have met you and had the opportunity to work with you. You are so loved and will be so missed ?
You might not love Kim Kardashian, but Karl was always a fan. They worked together on numerous occasions, and Kim commemorated Karl with some great behind the scenes photos of them on set.
The fashion bible shared a great photo of the designer at work, taken just last fall. Behind the black sunglasses and oversized collars, it’s easy to forget that Karl was a fashion genius, but this image shows him as the true artist he was.
Throughout his career, Karl Lagerfeld always had a sharp sense of humor, and he never took himself too seriously. I don’t know how Karl would’ve felt about all of the touching tributes, but he would probably have a good laugh at this. RIP Karl, you’ll be greatly missed.
Images: Shutterstock; lindsaylohan / Instagram; chanelofficial / Instagram; fendi / Instagram; naomi / Instagram; kimkardashian / Instagram; voguemagazine / Instagram; herrleudtke / Instagram