Coco (Gabrille) Chanel was known for lying about her age, her background and being mistress to many a rich and powerful man in her day. Coco skillfully used these relationships to help fund her empire. At 27 Coco opened her Paris millinery shop at 31 Rue Cambon.
Her simple, fashionable hats sold well to the mistresses of Coco's wealthy gentleman friends and soon Coco was expanding into the world of couture with her line of jersey women's wear. Her liberating, comfortable approach won favor over the corseted styles of the past.
At 42 Coco introduced her first perfume, the iconic Chanel No. 5.
Coco continued to gain success and lovers, one being a Nazi officer which raised many an eyebrow. It is said Chanel acted as a Nazi intelligence operative and used her position to gain full ownership to Parfums Chanel mostly owned by Jewish financial backer Pierre Wertheimer. After WWII Coco had some catching up to do on the fashion and social fronts, of course she redeemed herself with a revamping of her suiting and jewelry lines to compete with Christian Dior's rising popularity. Soon after Chanel was once again the most prestigious brand in fashion.
Coco continued to design until her death in 1971.
Coco gave the world the little black dress, the Chanel suit, the 2/55, pea coats, bellbottoms and something to talk about.
But the brand Chanel is about so much more than enduring fashion, elegant clothes and glamorous accessories and perfume, it is about the fantasy.
And nothing does that quite like a Chanel ad...