STYLE: Wise Words + Beautiful Bags From Chanel

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 By Susan "Honey" Good

What do you know about Chanel? Some think Chanel is a label consisting of overpriced, albeit beautiful, bags, clothes and accessories, but there is much more to this French company.

A bit of history: The House of Chanel is known for the little black dress, Chanel No. 5 perfume and the Chanel Suit. (Read my recent story about the essential LBD after 50 here.)

But, did you know that, according to Wikipedia, Chanel revolutionized fashion — high fashion (haute couture) and everyday fashion (prêt-à-porter) — by replacing structured-silhouettes, based upon the corset and the bodice, with garments that were functional and at the same time flattering to the woman’s figure? We've come a long way, baby!

Chanel was founded by couturière Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel, nicknamed "Coco." This wise woman not only had impeccable taste but also, in her time, shared many gems of wisdom that so many of us can appreciate.

(Pictured: One of my very favorite Chanel bags, a backpack purchased for me by Shelly over 20 years ago! A fine investment, indeed, I still travel with this bag to this very day.)

Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.
— Coco Chanel

I share the opinion that Coco expressed in the above quote; style is not just about clothes... it is how you live! To live with great style is not shallow, after all, style is a reflection of who you are. To express your own personal style in everything you do is not mindless, on the contrary, it is one of the bravest things a person can do.

The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.
— Coco Chanel

(Pictured: Another of my favorite Chanel bags, again, many moons old. This bag is truly timeless; it is a staple I have worn for years and will wear for years and years to come.)

Dress shabbily and they remember the dress; dress impeccably and they remember the woman.
— Coco Chanel