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Hollywood came out in full and fashionable force at the Met Gala 2023 to honor Karl Lagerfeld, the late creative director of Chanel who is the focus of this year’s Costume Institute exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
In addition to last night’s star-studded sartorial tributes on the red carpet, the retrospective is expected to inspire new and longtime fashion fans to rediscover Lagerfeld’s work, which spans from the 1950s until his death at the age of 85 on Feb. 19, 2019. Titled Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty, the Met exhibit runs through July 16 and honors the life and legendary career of the late designer through more than 150 pieces and sketches. Those who can’t see the collection in person can still shop exclusive designs celebrating the exhibition through the Met’s online store.
Lagerfeld’s fashion career began in the 1950s, when he apprenticed under Pierre Balmain and went on to become Jean Patou’s artistic director in 1958. The German designer went on to freelance for Charles Jourdan, Chloé and Valentino (among other brands), and he joined Fendi in 1967. Lagerfeld was hired to lead Chanel in 1983 and revolutionized the luxury French fashion house, thrusting him into international fashion fame. He debuted his namesake brand, Karl Lagerfeld, in 1984, and he also served two stints as the designer of Chloé (from 1974 to 1983 and from 1992 to 1997).
Related: The Best Online Luxury Consignment Stores for Designer Resale
The Met Gala is the museum’s annual fundraiser, and with the dress code reading simply, “In honor of Karl,” exhibition curator Andrew Bolton said he hopes gala guests will feel that “it’s in the spirit of Karl, and hopefully everyone will come out in vintage Chanel, vintage Fendi, vintage Chloé.” Starry guests didn’t simply wear the fashion icon’s designs from decades past: they evoked his spirit with Lagerfeld style signatures, as seen in fingerless leather gloves (worn by Jessica Chastain, Cara Delevingne and Ashley Park), monochrome ensembles, fans, bold sunglasses and even his fashionable feline, Choupette (Jared Leto and Doja Cat).
If you, too, are looking to pay homage to Kaiser Karl in your own wardrobe, we’ve rounded up the best places to buy Chanel, Fendi, Chloé, Jean Patou and more pieces designed by Lagerfeld, as well as exclusive items commemorating the Costume Institute’s exhibit at the Met store. Since Chanel doesn’t sell its fashion online (you’ll need to visit the label’s brick-and-mortar boutiques and retailers instead), online consignment retailers are your best bet in scoring a piece of the luxury French label and other Lagerfeld-designed finds without leaving your house.
Whether you’re seeking investment pieces such as Chanel’s classic 2.55 and Boy bags, Fendi’s pieces featuring their iconic FF monogram (designed by Lagerfeld in 1965), or Karl-inspired style statements such as pearl accessories and camellia accents, check out where to shop new and pre-loved Chanel, Fendi and more online below as well as standout picks available to buy right now.
The Met Store
To celebrate Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty, the Metropolitan Museum of Art has released exclusive items tied to the Costume Institute’s exhibit. The collection features charming leather and wooden Kokeshi dolls designed in the Kaiser’s image as well as candles, tote bags, tees, books, keychains, water bottles and more.
With Neiman Marcus as an investor, Southern California-based Fashionphile makes it easy to shop (or sell back) pre-loved Chanel, Fendi and other luxe labels. You can sell used goods at Fashionphile’s standalone showrooms (where you can also buy from a curated selection of bags and accessories) or Neiman Marcus Selling Studios. You can also sell your past purchases back to the company for up to one year after purchase and get up to 75 percent of your purchase price.
The consignment boutique recently rolled out a special collection dedicated to Karl Lagerfeld featuring his most influential designs, including Chanel’s Caviar, Boy and Gabrielle quilted bags and Fendi’s Zucca baguette styles.
What Goes Around Comes Around
Offering locations in New York and Beverly Hills as well as an online store, What Goes Around Comes Around was among the first boutiques to specialize in designer vintage for fashion lovers and collectors when it was founded in NYC in 1993. (Lori Harvey and Rachel Zoe have professed their love for the store.) The luxury vintage emporium offers everything from ’80s and ’90s Chanel and Fendi to rare collectibles, and the retailer says “sources are extensive and diverse, ensuring access to coveted vintage pieces previously owned by private clients in Europe, specialty collectors in Asia and top dealers and collectors of luxury worldwide.”
Home to authenticated designer bags through Shopbop and What Goes Around Comes Around, Amazon’s Luxury Stores department is a surprising source for Chanel and Fendi as well as many other luxury fashion houses. Find handbags, jewelry, belts and other leather accessories, all organized to perfection by color.
Lagerfeld’s designs at Jean Patou, Balmain and other labels may be hard to come by, but you might uncover some of those rare pieces at 1stDibs, the online marketplace that specializes in unique and extraordinary fashion, furniture, art, jewelry and more. Where flap bags and quilted cross-bodies may be a dime a dozen at other designer sources, 1stDibs is a go-to for one-of-a-kind pieces from Chanel, Fendi, Karl Lagerfeld, Patou and many other design houses.
eBay offers an Authenticity Guarantee that includes a multi-point inspection by trained experts, ensuring that you’re bidding on a legit Chanel. Find nearly every luxury label under the sun, including Fendi, vintage Chloé and even Jean Patou circa Karl Lagerfeld, to name a few.
No, StockX doesn’t just hawk Air Jordans and sneakerhead essentials — the online resale haven also offers luxury designer labels, including Chanel and Fendi. Find clothing, jewelry, bags, wallets and other classic and one-of-a-kind discoveries from both brands and place your best bid or buy items for the asking price.
New York-based Rebag has been buying and selling used luxury bags since 2014 and has stores in the Big Apple as well as in Beverly Hills, New York and Greenwich, Connecticut. You can shop more than 25,000 items online (including from Rebag brick-and-mortar inventories) ranging from Chanel’s classic flap bags and Caviar totes to exclusive Fendi x Rimowa luggage, among other pieces designed by Lagerfeld.
The Luxury Closet
The Dubai-born designer boutique stocks luxury items from sellers around the world, and Chanel and Fendi are among the many, many brands you’ll find online.
Online designer retailer FWRD recently launched its Buyback resale program, and you can shop authentic Chanel, Fendi and many other luxury labels.
Online designer resale marketplace TheRealReal specializes in clothing, bags, jewelry, watches, home decor and more, including by Chanel, Fendi, Chloé, Karl Lagerfeld and more.
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