Karl Lagerfeld may be, himself, a man, but he could care less about men’s opinions of fashion. And according to a New York Times Q&A with him, the designer also doesn’t give a fig for selfies, fame, or the label “artist.” One thing he’s still bullish on, however, is Choupette, saying that he would like the blue-eyed feline to become more famous than he is. “Then I can disappear behind Choupette.” Somehow, we don’t think that will be happening anytime soon.
He prefers a female staff: “I’m not crazy to discuss fashion with men. I couldn’t care less about their opinion.”
You have him to thank for bandage dresses, sort of: ”[When Hervé Peugnet began working for him] I said, ‘Hervé, this name is not possible, it’s too heavy.’” [He renamed him Léger, meaning light, and he went on to found the label we all know today.]
He hates selfies: “I don’t do selfies. But other people do, and they all want to do selfies with me. No, no, no. Thank God, Sébastien, my assistant, he’s mean to the people in the street, mean and rude. I’m a nice person.”
On his Haute Fourrure collection for Fendi, coming in July: “For me, as long as people eat meat and wear leather, I don’t get the message. It’s very easy to say no fur, no fur, no fur, but it’s an industry. Who will pay for all the unemployment of the people if you suppress the industry of the fur? The hunters in the north for the sable, they have no other job, there is nothing else to do. Those organizations who are much against it, they are not Bill Gates … I hate the idea of killing animals in a horrible way, but I think all that improved a lot. I think a butcher shop is even worse. It’s like visiting a murder. It’s horrible, no? So I prefer not to know it.”
He doesn’t think of himself as an artist: “No, no, no, no. I’m a designer, I do photos, I do books, I’m a publisher, but I don’t have the self-proclaimed label ‘artist.’ I hate that. Very pretentious. If other people say it, it’s very flattering, but if you start to say it yourself, you better forget about it.”
He has no plans to stop designing anytime soon: “I would die on the spot. [Coco] Chanel died in the middle of a collection when she was in her nearly 90s. I have time!”