Virginie Viard Departs Chanel: A Legacy of Relaxed Elegance and Inclusivity

Virginie Viard, the creative director of Chanel who has been at the helm for the past three years, is leaving the company. Viard first joined Chanel in 1987 as an embroiderer. When she returned to the house that Coco Chanel built and Karl Lagerfeld renovated and expanded, Viard’s responsibilities had expanded. Known as the German-born designer’s right arm, Viard moved from his side and into the spotlight as his chosen successor, making her solo debut for Chanel’s Fall/Winter 2019 collection.

Under Viard’s direction, Chanel presented its first (and the first for any Western luxury brand) show in Sub-Saharan Africa, for the Resort 2023 collection. That collection was especially rich in elaborate embroideries, a skill dear to the designer.

French street chic, fantasy, sports, and seaside glamour are some of the themes Viard explored while at Chanel—and, in turn, were documented in the pages of Vogue.

Viard’s departure marks the end of an era for Chanel. She is a talented designer who has brought a fresh perspective to the brand. She will be missed, but her legacy will continue to inspire future generations of designers.

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