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The legend lives on: New exhibition devoted to Chanel`s life and work opens at London`s V&A Museum
Sep 13

Associated Press

LONDON (AP) __ The little black dress. The tweed dress suit. The perfume simply known as No. 5.

Those instantly-recognizable fashion classics, and many more lesser-known designs by Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel, are celebrated in a major new exhibition at London`s V&A Museum dedicated to the life and work of the famed French designer.

Curators have brought together nearly 200 outfits seen together for the first time, charting Chanel`s long career from the opening of her millinery boutique in Paris in 1910 to her final collection in 1971.

``Of course there are many elements that we are all familiar about Gabrielle Chanel and what she contributed to fashion," said Connie Karol Burks, one of the curators. "But in this exhibition we expand out from that, and we really look in detail at how her approach to design influenced the way we all dress."

The exhibition begins with one of the earliest surviving Chanel garments __ a simple cream blouse from 1916 made from silk jersey, a humble fabric previously used for underwear and stockings.

Chanel was the first to show the fabric`s appeal for high fashion, curators said, and the blouse sets the tone for the relaxed elegance and defiance of the more rigid fashions of the day that the designer is known for.

"What`s really striking about it is just how modern it looks today," more than a century later, Burks said.

By The Associated Press, Copyright 2023

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