Chanel jacket dupes

Chanel jacket dupes

Karl Lagerfeld once said 'The Chanel jacket never goes out of fashion, its timelessness makes it for ever modern'. I initially thought this was the perfect hook for starting this post. But actually, I am not sure I entirely agree with that statement. Of course, the Chanel jacket remains a statement piece worn by trend setters and followers alike more than 60 years after it was first revealed. But what makes this jacket so distinct and recognisable? Does the way we envision the Chanel jacket today correspond to Coco Chanel's original creation?

 Drawing by Karl Lagerfeld

Drawing by Karl Lagerfeld

Like most of her creations, the Chanel jacket was driven by a functional purpose: to dress women in clothes that would allow them to move freely. 'The elegance of a garment is the freedom of movement' she would say. To achieve this, she borrowed from the menswear of her time: the cut was copied from Austrian men jackets; the material, tweed, she discovered in Scotland while going hunting with her lover the Duke of Westminster. She then added her own personal touches to create a stylish yet pragmatic garment: four pockets (again inspired from mens fashion) for hands as well as cigarettes and glasses; a perfect fit with the insertion of a thin chain into the lining; buttonholes at the end of the sleeves (to ensure easy dressing and undressing); a gimp thread on the edge of the jacket; and the colour, black, in contrast with the fashion at the time, thereby revolutionising the use of a colour only reserved to funerals. 

Now that does beg the question as to whether the image that we have of the Chanel jacket today bear much resemblance to what Coco Chanel had initially intended. The way the Maison Chanel, particularly under Karl Lagerfeld, has interpreted the original 'little black jacket' has considerably evolved with striking updates in terms of cuts, colours, even the number of pockets and obviously what the jacket is actually paired with. 

 French model Laetitia Casta and Karl Lagerfeld

French model Laetitia Casta and Karl Lagerfeld

But who cares actually? It's the very nature of fashion to constantly evolve and adapt to changes in society, right? And perhaps one of the most striking evolution of the 'little black jacket' today is how it is no longer strictly owned by one of the most famous Maison de haute couture and has moved to less exclusive fashion brands and the high street. And it is no longer strictly reserved to skirt suits either but has been perfectly matched with jeans, tuxedo pants, leather...

The white jacket I am wearing above is from Zara, old co unfortunately. But the current FW collection offers plenty of options with prices starting from £79.99. Take your pick, you can't go wrong!

Navy Tweed Jacket by Zara, £79.99

Embellished Tweed Jacket in Navy/Black by Rebecca Taylor, £445 at Trilogy

Laura Clement Couture-Style Tweed Jacket, £89 on La Redoute UK

Anglet Twill Jacket by Iro, £138.60 on The Outnet

Lady Jacket in Metallic Tweed by J.Crew, £198

Maje Valou Woven Tweed Jacket, £234 at Harrods

Nalokie Jacket in Black & White by Iro, £375 at Trilogy Stores

Mango Contrast Trims Jacket, £79.99

Belle Jacket in Pink by Helene Berman, £165 at Trilogy Stores

White Shirts forever

White Shirts forever

Breton Stripes... Bien sûr!

Breton Stripes... Bien sûr!