It happened 50 Years Ago on Sunday Morning

It happened 50 years ago, on Sunday morning, when the 87-year-old couturier was working on a new collection at her home, a massive suite in Paris’ most luxurious hotel and suddenly died. The world stopped when Coco Chanel (1883-1971), the mother of the tweed suit, the two-tone shoes, the quilted handbag, and the ‘perfume of the century’ passed away.
By the time she died, most French had forgiven her for collaborating with the Nazis during the occupation of France during WWII. But in the 90s, that dark chapter in her biography was brought to the surface. Chanel had spent the war at her 188-square-meter suite at the Ritz with her lover, an aristocratic German officer, Baron Hans Guenther von Dincklage, and the two took off for Switzerland after the liberation; she didn’t return to her suite at the Ritz until 1954.
Chanel ordered  that no one was to be permitted into her famed home at the Ritz after her death with the exception of her family, two nieces and a nephew. Three days later, on January 13th, thousands gathered in front of the Madeleine church in Paris to attend Chanel’s funeral, before she was taken to a cemetery in Lausanne, Switzerland to be buried in private. Her tomb has since become a place of pilgrimage. On that day, nobody would imagine that her label would turn into a $100 billion business by Karl Lagerfeld.
Let’s remember Coco Chanel who died 50 years ago on Sunday morning.

Coco Chanel and the Duke of Westminster at the races in 1924; courtesy Phillips/Topical Press Agency — Hulton Archive — Getty Images.


Coco Chanel’s Grave in Lausanne, Switzerland.

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