Karl’s little advice
Karl and I are the most opposite human beings one could imagine. But I often find myself closer to him than what I’d thought, and it’s not only megalomania. Besides that, I have an history with Karl. Back in the 90’s, I was once assigned by the underground magazine «The Clamped Oyster» (it had disappeared since, outpowered by glossies like among others, Purple) to report from Karl’s studio at the house of Chanel. I assisted to the last fitting before the show, in the very heart of the sanctuary, where Karl was reviewing and giving the last touch to his models, surrounded by collaborators, muses and advisers, such as Victoire de Castellane, Amanda Harlech who had left her horses for the day, and some of the world most prestigious magazines editors in chief. Everybody was so serious, the only fellow with who I could share a momentory friendship was Michel Gaubert, the soon to be World famous DJ, who modestly show me a cassette tape on which, the night before, he had laid down musics for the show: « a little of Mozart, a little of something else ». I should have been thrilled to be where no one’s never allowed, and in a sense I was –although I would have prefered to witness Allen Ginsberg reading « Howl » for the first time, or being 2nd camera assistant on Jean-Luc Godard’s « One + One », not to mention being an intern at the Factory in its glorious days – but somehow, I couldn’t concentrate on the action, distracted by Camille Miceli, the PR of the time, who in high boots, mini skirt and tight tee-shirt was asking me if I needed anything. I was hynotised, unaware that one day she would pose in her nude for Paradis, Thomas Lenthal’s magazine, who on his side was to become Victoire de Castellane’s husband. Back at the rehearsal, Philip Treacy, the great hat designer was graciously slouching in his casual clothes, while I had stupidly trade my worn out jeans and thrift store plaid shirts for what I believed to be more adapted to Couture, and had pulled off a boxy navy power suit, paired with a red tie. The red tie was the mistake, and when I was finally introduced to Karl, it was to hear « Oh, I thought you were the security man, looking after the jewelry ! ». One would have been vexated to death (and well, I can’t say I wasn’t) ! But I survived to understand I had been gifted with the most exclusive style advice ever (it’s okay, I’m glad to share it with you now).
So whenever I come accross a Karl’s interview, I read it, meticulously ! There’s always a lot to learn from. The most rescent one I read was in the May issue of Interview Magazine, where asked by model Sigrid Agren what would be his advice on how to become a supermodel, he replys :
Lagerfeld :(…) You want to know what the real secret is ?
Agren : Tell me.
Lagerfeld : It’s not being perfect.