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CHANEL, Gabrielle (Coco), French fashion designer, 1883-1971. Gabrielle asked a chemist called Beaux for help in creating a perfume, Chanel No.5, in 1921. The product was named for herself and her favourite number. Also it was the fifth sample produced for evaluation. This was the first perfume to contain synthetic chemicals as the scent. Probably this is the best-known brand of perfume worldwide. Gabrielle also introduced clothing styles designed for ease of wearing and relaxation as well as couture. These styles were based on woollen jerseys and cotton dresses, trousers, cardigans, and the use of chunky fake jewellery. Her practical, modern and stylish designs set a trend for modern fashion houses. Apparently she looked to men’s clothing styles for inspiration concerning comfort. The fashion house commenced in 1920, and the little black dress was always an essential component of her styles, it became a neologism.

Gabrielle (Coco) Chanel

Fashion Pioneer

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