Chapter 5: Coco
Once upon a time, there lived a little girl who hid her humble origins all her life and preferred to invent her own legend.
Once upon a time, Gabrielle Chanel was born under the sign of the Leo to a traveling peddler and a laundress, who died at 32, exhausted by life.
Once upon a time, there was a father who abandoned his five children and had his three daughters sent away to an orphanage. At 12 years old, Gabrielle would never see him again. Forever after, she pretended that he had left to make his way in America.
Once upon a time, there was an orphanage behind the walls of a convent, the abbey of Aubazine, where Gabrielle spent nearly seven years. The Romanesque purity of this ascetic world would inspire her sense of austerity and her taste for black and white, while the opulence of religious garments and ceremonial objects would spark her fascination with Baroque style, gold, and colored gems in years to come.
Once upon a time, there was a beautiful young girl who spent her days sewing and her nights singing in a cabaret before troops of cavalrymen. She was called "Coco" because she often sang "Who's Seen Coco in the Trocadero?" She always preferred to pretend that Coco was the nickname given to her by her father.
從前，有位美麗的少女，她白天縫紉，夜晚則到一間夜總會唱歌給騎兵團聽。人們叫她「Coco」，因為她時常唱一首《誰有在特羅卡德羅看到 Coco？》。 她總是喜歡假裝 Coco 是父親給自己取的小名。
Once upon a time, a young woman with a boyish allure refused to ride sidesaddle on the horses of a well-born cavalier, Etienne Balsan. She dressed like no one else, taking her inspiration from masculine attire and inventing new styles of hat, which she stripped off their birds and feathers to make them simpler, lighter, more chic. Her first clients were working girls, but society quickly followed.
Once upon a time, there was a great love named Boy Capel, English, wealthy, and cultivated—he was the man of her dreams. He introduced her to literature, the Orient, and the esoteric. Boy helped Coco become Chanel. She decided to open her first boutiques in Paris, Deauville, and Biarritz. She wanted to work to win her liberty.
從前，有種深刻的愛叫「鮑伊‧卡柏」，他是英國人，富有且溫文儒雅－－他是她的理想情人。他引領她進入文學、東方以及神祕學的世界。鮑伊讓 Coco 蛻變成香奈兒。她決定在巴黎、多維勒還有比亞里茨開設最初的幾間精品店。她想努力工作來獲得自由。
Once upon a time, a revolution came to pass when, in a stroke of genius, Coco Chanel transformed the female silhouette. She shortened dresses, revealed ankles, freed the waist, eliminated corsets, revived jersey, cut her hair, and bronzed her skin. Chanel closed one era and launched a new century of fashion.
Once a upon a time, at 31 Rue Cambon, Mademoiselle Chanel opened her first couture house in Paris in 1918. The little country girl, the orphan of Aubazine, had become the queen of Paris. Before liberating women, she had liberated herself.
從前，香奈兒小姐在 1918 年時於巴黎康朋街 31 號創立她的第一間時裝店。這個鄉下小女孩、奧巴辛的孤兒，已經搖身一變為巴黎女王。在解放女性之前，她已先解放了自己。
Once upon a time, there was a love story that ended abruptly. Boy Capel died in a car accident. For the first and last time, Coco Chanel was seen to cry. "Either I die as well," she said, "or I finish what we started together." She chose to go on.