There are not many brands in the fashion world that have as much worldwide success as Chanel. The famous French fashion house represents the pinnacle of luxury fashion, beauty, and perfumery. With a reputation for impeccable elegance, quality, and sophistication, the Chanel name carries real weight.
Meaning and history
In her spare time, Coco Chanel sang in a cabaret. During one of the performances, she was noticed by French aristocrat Etienne Balsan. The relationship between them began, and Gabrielle moved to Paris, where in 1910 she opened the first Chanel boutique in Balsan’s apartment.
Chanel received long-awaited recognition in 1912 when theater actress Gabrielle Dorziat began wearing her hats in Fernand Nozière’s play Bel Ami. In 1913 Chanel opened its boutiques in two cities at once – the resort towns of Deauville and Biarritz.
Since Chanel had never been a professional dressmaker, she simply could not sew a “real” woman’s dress. Inventive Coco found a very original way out of this situation: she simply began to sew dresses from jersey – a fabric that had previously been used only for men’s underwear, and made a fortune out of it. Chanel used the principle of simplification in all her creations. Creating another outfit, she simply took scissors, threw the fabric on a mannequin, and cut and stabbed the shapeless mass of matter until the desired silhouette appeared.
In 1918, Chanel purchased a building at 31 rue Cambon, in one of the most fashionable neighborhoods of Paris, where the first Chanel store was located and where her fashion house was later located.
In 1924, Chanel, together with entrepreneur Pierre Wertheimer, opened a perfume division, Parfums Chanel. In 1932, Chanel’s diamond jewelry exhibition premiered.
In 1939, with the outbreak of World War II, Chanel froze production and closed all of its stores. When Chanel relaunched her brand in 1953, having closed it during the war, her tweed suits with decorative trim and chains along the bottom were a model of chic.
In February 1955, quilted rectangular leather bags on silver and gold-colored chains were introduced, which were equally comfortable to carry on the shoulder or in the hand. The date of their release – 2/55 – became the internal name of the line, which became legendary.
Gabrielle Bonheur (Coco) Chanel died on January 10, 1971, at the age of 87 from a heart attack at the Ritz Hotel. It is noteworthy that until her death Coco Chanel continued to develop collections of her brand and collaborate with other companies.
What is Chanel?
Chanel is a very significant name in the world of fashion. The legendary French fashion house was created in the early 20th century and named in honor of its founder, Gabrielle Coco Chanel. The brand logo in the form of the double letter C is known all over the world and needs no introduction either.
In terms of visual identity, the legendary fashion house has always been using just one logo as the monogram with two mirrored intertwined letters “C”, which perfectly represents the concept and idea behind the Chanel brand — simple shapes and minimalistic colors.
1909 — Today
The iconic Chanel logo was designed by Coco Chanel at the very beginning of the brand’s history and has never been changed since then. According to the brand’s official version, the mirrored “C” symbol is inspired by a stained glass window in the chapel of the Aubazine Convent hall, where the children of the orphanage where Gabrielle lived for several years often went to pray.
Only in the 1940s the CC monogram started being accompanied by an uppercase “Chanel” lettering, set in a very laconic geometric sans-serif typeface.
Font and color
The bold uppercase lettering from the primary Chanel logo is set in a modern geometric sans-serif typeface with clean contours and distinctive lines of the characters. The closest fonts to the one, used in this insignia, are, probably, Bristone Medium, FM Bolyar Sans Pro 800, or TT Norms Pro Expanded Bold.
As for the color palette of the Chanel visual identity, it is based on a combination of white and black, which perfectly represents the brand and the shades, used most in its collections. The logo can be executed in black lines against a white background or vice versa, in white characters on a black background.