Karl Lagerfeld Dies At 85

The German designer Karl Lagerfeld, who was associated with the Chanel brand for 36 years, has died at 85. I had only one significant encounter with him. Over lunch, with a couple of other fashion journalists. (I was covering fashion at the time.) Karl and I talked mostly about Harry Kessler, the Anglo-German diplomat and arts aficionado, whose diaries recounting life in high-culture Europe during the first half of the twentieth century had just been published in English. Karl had read Kessler since boyhood and could recite passages by heart. I shouldn’t have been surprised. Fashion was only one of Karl’s many interests, photography being his major other passion. Auf wiedersehn, Karl.

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