Kate Moss and Cara Delevingne among celebrities designing custom white shirts in honour of Karl Lagerfeld

Five months after the death of Karl Lagerfeld, a number of his famous friends are coming together to launch “A Tribute to Karl: The White Shirt Project”.

In honour of the creative director’s legacy, celebrities including models Cara Delevingne and Kate Moss as well as actor Diane Kruger will be designing their own interpretation of Lagerfeld’s iconic white shirt.

Other celebrities involved in the project include model Amber Valletta, British racing driver Lewis Hamilton and fashion designers Tommy Hilfiger and Alessandro Michele.

Seven of the final designs will be replicated 77 times each and sold for charity at a price of €777 (£698) each. 

The number seven was chosen as it was Lagerfeld’s lucky number and represented many elements in his life, including his favourite arrondissement in Paris (the 7th), and the name of his bookshop and publishing house (7L). 

All proceeds of the shirt sales will be donated to the French charity “Sauver la Vie,” which funds medical research at the Paris Descartes University and which Lagerfeld supported for many years. 

Carine Roitfeld, creative visionary and long-time friend of Lagerfeld’s will curate the global project and launch an exhibition of the final shirts during Paris Fashion Week in September 2019. 

Speaking of the tribute, Roitfeld said: “When I think of Karl’s most iconic designs from his career, I always I think of his white shirts. 

“This tribute will allow us to honour his legacy while incorporating his unwavering love of fashion and giving back; I can’t imagine a better way for us to celebrate his passion for creativity.” 

Roitfeld shared a strong relationship with Lagerfeld, both professionally and personally, having collaborated on numerous projects together throughout their career.

Pier Paolo Righi, chief executive officer at Maison Karl Lagerfeld, said the project is a way for people to share their admiration for the late designer and express their emotions. 

“The participants in this tribute are all people who Karl knew, who he felt connected to, or who inspired him,” Righi said.

Karl Lagerfeld’s original sketch of the white shirt to be customised (Maison Karl Lagerfeld)

“Sending a personal message through the creation of an individual bespoke version of Karl’s iconic shirt makes it, for each participant, a very unique and intimate way of relating back to Karl.”

On Tuesday 19 February, Chanel confirmed that Lagerfeld had passed away at the age of 85 in Paris. 

The logo for “A Tribute to Karl: The White Shirt Project” (Maison Karl Lagerfeld

Lagerfeld was one of the most successful and recognisable figures in the fashion industry, having spent almost 70 years working in the business.

He was best known for his work at Chanel where he had worked since 1983, which is when he was appointed artistic director.

A portrait of Karl Lagerfeld (Maison Karl Lagerfeld)

In an official statement, Chanel said at the time: “An extraordinary creative individual, Karl Lagerfeld reinvented the brand’s codes created by Gabrielle [Coco] Chanel: the Chanel jacket and suit, the little black dress, the precious tweeds, the two-tone shoes, the quilted handbags, the pearls and costume jewellery. 

“Regarding Gabrielle Chanel, he said, ‘My job is not to do what she did, but what she would have done. The good thing about Chanel is it is an idea you can adapt to many things’.”

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