Adding irreverent touches to the brand's classic designs, pioneering high-profile runway shows, and expanding key areas of the business such as perfume and jewellery, he helped turn Chanel into one of the largest and most profitable luxury brands in the world.
But speculation about his health spiralled last month after he missed the first show of his life, with Chanel executives saying that he "was exhausted this morning". Quilted purses decorated with cat faces (a nod to his beloved and very famous feline, Choupette) swung by, their double "C" logos glimmering. He was the creative director at Chanel since 1983 and has created exclusive collections for both Chanel and Fendi.
Viard with Lagerfeld previous year.
"What I do Coco would have hated", Lagerfeld said in "The World According to Karl", a 2013 book of his quotes.
"Rest in peace Karl, you were a true genius and will be missed, so much", she wrote.
"A prolific creative mind with endless imagination, Karl Lagerfeld explored many artistic horizons, including photography and short films", it continues.
In the biography featured on the Karl Lagerfeld's website, the designer is said to be born in 1938.
Industry names are paying tribute to the fashion giant, including actress Diane Kruger and Italian fashion designer Donatella Versace.
But Lagerfeld said she should not have been so flashy with her money. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.
His parents were Elisabeth Bahlmann, who was Swedish, and Otto Lagerfeldt, who made a fortune producing condensed milk in France and selling it in Germany.
"The House of Fendi is in deep mourning following the death of Karl Lagerfeld, who left his mark and genius with us for more than five decades", it said.
Lagerfeld also started his own label, Karl Lagerfeld, which though less commercially successful than his other ventures, was widely seen as a sketchpad where the designer worked through his ideas. "On the other hand, her sister struggles", he said.
He never ceased to shake up the storied house, sending out a logo-emblazoned bikini so small that the top looked like pasties on a string and another collection that dispensed entirely with bottoms, with the models wearing little jackets over opaque tights instead. Lagerfeld changed his original surname from Lagerfeldt, because he believed it sounded "more commercial". Now, as the world reflects on Lagerfeld's career and legacy, we can do more than mourn a great talent.