Karl Lagerfeld's Red Carpet Legacy: See His Iconic Chanel Designs on Hollywood's Biggest Stars

Chanel's iconic creative director, who died at the age of 85 on Feb. 19, leaves behind a lasting fashion legacy thanks to his couture creations that graced the red carpet. Throughout his 36-year tenure at the French fashion house, his designs were immediately recognizable thanks to their intricate beading, feathery embroidery, and bright, bold hues. Look back at the most unforgettable outfits to hit the carpet

01 of 23

Nicole Kidman

Grab Cut Insert Cut Grab Cut Insert Cut Grab Cut Insert Cut Grab Cut Insert Cut 8548301 11436#ABACA

Nicole began establishing her reign as a standout on the red carpet in 2004, when she arrived at the Oscars in a strapless blueish-gray gown with beaded and feathery appliqués.

02 of 23

Margot Robbie

NY Premiere of "Mary Queen of Scots", New York, USA - 04 Dec 2018
Charles Sykes/Invision/AP/REX/Shutterstock

The actress looked like actual royalty at the Mary Queen of Scots premiere in 2018 in her intricately-beaded high-collar Chanel gown with sheer overlay.

03 of 23

Cara Delevingne

"Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons: Art Of The In-Between" Costume Institute Gala - Arrivals
Neilson Barnard/Getty

Cara's walked countless Chanel catwalks, and took this brocade pantsuit from the Spring 2017 Chanel Couture collection for a spin down the 2017 Met Gala carpet.

04 of 23

Emma Stone

EE British Academy Film Awards - Red Carpet Arrivals
Karwai Tang/WireImage

Emma loves rocking pants on the red carpet, and wore an embellished straight-leg style to the 2017 BAFTAs under her plunging strapless matching dress.

05 of 23

Keira Knightley

Disney's "The Nutcracker And The Four Realms" - European Premiere - VIP Arrivals
Dave Benett/WireImage

The Chanel muse and face of Coco Mademoiselle always favors the brand for big events, so it's only fitting she chose a frilly tulle princess-style Chanel gown for the premiere of her movie The Nutcracker and the Four Realms in 2018.

06 of 23

Lily-Rose Depp

"Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons: Art Of The In-Between" Costume Institute Gala

Lily gave a nod to her famous moniker on the 2017 Met Gala red carpet in a vibrant hot pink strapless Chanel gown with silver floral detailing.

07 of 23

Cameron Diaz

The 66th Annual Golden Globe Awards - Arrivals
Frazer Harrison/Getty

Cameron's hot pink ruffled Chanel dress turned heads at the 2009 Golden Globes.

08 of 23

Jennifer Aniston

56th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards - Arrivals
Kevin Winter/Getty

Between her streamlined strapless Chanel column gown and perfectly beachy, tousled waves, Jennifer solified her glam-meets-laid-back style at the 2004 Emmy Awards.

09 of 23

Penélope Cruz

70th Primetime Emmy Awards, Arrivals, Los Angeles, USA - 17 Sep 2018

At first glance one may have mistaken Penélope for Cinderella at the 2018 Emmy Awards thanks to her dreamy princess-style Chanel ball gown with feathery appliqués.

10 of 23

Margot Robbie

90th Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals

The 2018 Oscars nominee wore a white off-the-shoulder Chanel Haute Couture creation to the ceremony and accessorized with a “cool and modern” clear Chanel clutch and delicate, “more pesonal” Chanel Fine Jewelry, as her stylist Kate Young told PEOPLE.

11 of 23

Dakota Johnson


Dakota wore a more rock ‘n’ roll look from the brand to the 2015 Golden Globe Awards in her high-shine metallic gown with center slit at the skirt.

12 of 23

Jennifer Lopez

Kevin Winter/Getty

Jennifer traded her typical skin-baring looks for something a bit more subdued at the 2001 Oscars in a taupe aymmetrical gown with full skirt, but still managed to command every bit as much attention.

13 of 23

Blake Lively


Between the floral appliqués on her cap-sleeve Chanel design and her romantic side-swept fishtail braid, everyone was pinning Blake's photos from the Green Lantern premiere in 2011 to their "dream looks" Pinterest boards.

14 of 23

Julianne Moore


Karl made Julianne a custom Chanel Couture creation for the 2015 Oscars, which her stylist Leslie Fremarsays he "very rarely" did. "I got to see first hand when he admired someone, cared about someone he would go above and beyond for that person,” she said about working with Karl on Julianne's look.

15 of 23

Anne Hathaway

Jason Merritt/Getty

This white strapless Chanel Couture column dress is classic, statuesque and perfect for a Golden Globe award winner. (She took home best supporting actress in 2013 for Les Misérables.)

16 of 23

Kirsten Dunst


This Chanel Couture dress brought an edge (with that high-shine strapless bodice) and romanticism (in the tulle rounded skirt) to the closing ceremony at the Cannes Film Festival in 2011.

17 of 23

Blake Lively


Blake was accompanied by the man himself at the 2011 Met Gala, where she wore a Chanel Couture Grecian-style draped dress with a sheer bodice featuring silver metallic appliqués.

18 of 23

Diane Kruger

Diane Kruger.

Karl’s longtime muse wore a look from the Chanel Resort 2013 collection to the amfAR Cinema Against AIDS event during the 2012 Cannes Film Festival that featured purple floral design accents and a folded sculptural mini skirt.

19 of 23

Julianne Moore


Pockets! Feathers! This dress brought the fun to the 2014 Cannes Film Festival red carpet.

20 of 23

Sarah Jessica Parker


The silky yellow draped satin, the elegant tie around the neck and the silver swirled design accent all made Sarah Jessica’s 2010 Oscars Chanel Couture dress a dreamy choice for the red carpet.

21 of 23

Lady Gaga


Gaga always insists on a standout look, and for the opening of Gaga's Workshop at Barneys New York in 2011, she went especially big in a custom creation from Karl himself: This full-skirted white ballgown (complete with petticoat) inspired by the brand's classic suits, plusa matching Chanel bag, of course.

22 of 23

Michelle Williams


Michelle’s cap-sleeve beaded Chanel Couture column gown at the 2011 Oscars is one of those subtly simple designs (upon first glance) that packs a powerful punch thanks, in part, to its impeccable fit.

23 of 23

Blake Lively

Pascal Le Segretain/WireImage

The iridescent appliqués glimmering throughout the translucent panels on her dress made Blake truly shine at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival.

Related Articles