It was a beautiful sunny day, so I decided to wander over to the Duke of York's Picturehouse and spend a couple of hours in the dark in the company of Audrey Tatou, watching Coco Before Chanel.
I enjoyed it - it was fascinating to learn about her early life (the film ends just as she's setting up as a fashion designer). What struck me most was how different the garments she started making for herself were from the fashion of the day.
The film shows her making herself simple, comfortable, practical clothes from garments she's pinched from her boyfriends, while all around her the upper class woman are corsetted and wearing enormous frilly dresses and hats which make them look like wedding cakes. The young Chanel's homemade clothes look thirty years ahead of their time.
She's portrayed as a prickly but sharply intelligent character, going from rags to riches but not without taking advantage of a couple of rich admirers on the way. My favourite quote was when Chanel is asked how old she is and replies, "When I'm bored, I feel ancient" - a fantastic anti-aging tip, I think!