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25 exquisite pieces of fashion advice from Coco Chanel

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She's the style icon who revolutionised the world of fashion, the creator of the little black dress and the legendary Chanel no.5 perfume. But the great Coco Chanel was also distinguished by her sharp wit and her independent views on everything.

We put together 25 of her most insightful, funny and interesting quotes about fashion. Because really, whose advice apart from Coco's do you really need?

  1. Beware originality. Originality in women’s fashion can lead to a masquerade.
  2. Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance.
  3. Caring about how you look has to start in your heart and soul. Beauty products on their own won’t help.
  4. It's impossible for a woman to be in a bad mood when she's wearing a good outfit.
  5. Lace is one of the most wonderful imitations of nature. But pearls are perfect for every occasion.
  6. At the age of 20, a woman has the face which nature gave her. At 30, she has the face she made herself. At 40, she has the face she deserves.
  7. A woman's hands are her calling card. Her neck and bust are her passport.
  8. A woman’s age is not important. You can look wonderful in your twenties, still be amazing in your forties and stay fabulous for the rest of your life.
  9.  Perfume is an invisible but indispensable and unsurpassed fashion accessory. It announces a woman's entrance and reminds others of her when she has left.
  10. If you've ever been astounded by a woman's beauty but you can't remember what she was wearing, then she was dressed in the perfect outfit.
  11. The best accessory for a woman is a handsome man.
  12. Nothing makes a woman look so old as trying desperately hard to look young.
  13. 'When should I wear perfume?' young women ask. My answer: 'When you want to be kissed'.
  14. A woman who doesn't use cosmetics has too high an opinion of herself.
  15. True beauty lasts forever even as one's external prettiness disappears. But women for some reason strive to stay pretty rather than attempt to become beautiful.
  16. The worse a woman is feeling, the better she should look.
  17. Some people think luxury is the opposite of poverty. It is not. It is the opposite of vulgarity.
  18. If you have crooked legs, wear something with a low neckline.
  19. Those with good taste wear jewellery. Those without settle for gold.
  20. Don't try to look younger. No one can say they are young by the time they're 50. But I still know many fifty-year-olds who look better than young women.
  21. Be a caterpillar during the day and a butterfly at night. There is nothing more comfortable than a caterpillar and nothing more made for love than a butterfly. We need dresses that crawl and dresses that fly.
  22. A dress might look good on its hanger, but that doesn't tell you anything. You can only really judge it when a woman's wearing it, when she moves her arms and legs and bends at the waist.
  23. When putting on accessories, take off the last thing you’ve put on.
  24. There are no ugly women, only lazy ones.
  25. A sense of freedom is always stylish.
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