Le Paris Russe De CHANEL - An Idea Becomes A Sketch
Taking inspiration from the Russian artifacts in Gabrielle Chanel's apartment, the Artistic Director of the CHANEL High Jewelry studio sketches a study for the Aigle Protecteur necklace, creating a likeness of the double-headed eagle perched atop Coco Chanel’s mirror.
While Paris would see a wave of Russian emigrants as a result of the revolution of 1917, Serge Diaghilev—the great Russian-born critic, curator and ballet impresario—flooded the city with Russian mystique as early as 1909. With the sensational debut of the Ballets Russes, a Russian dance troupe that originated in Paris and became the most influential ballet company of the 20th century, Diaghilev conjured a vision of Russia in the imagination of Parisians.
Although Gabrielle Chanel and Serge Diaghilev came from distinctly different backgrounds—he from a cultured and wealthy Russian family - she, an orphan raised by nuns—the unlikely pair were kindred spirits with a like-minded work ethic and disregard for convention. One evening in her townhouse at 29 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, Mademoiselle hosted a glorious event in Diaghilev's honor. A stunning party where Russians rubbed shoulders with Parisian society figures and artists while a band played in the opulent setting.