Letter to Coco Chanel – Happy Birthday!

Gabrielle Dorziat

 May 1912

My dear Coco,

I thoroughly enjoyed our day together last week. That hat, my goodness darling, that hat I modeled for you? I must have it!  All my friends are dying to see your next creations. My dear, they are waiting with great fervor to buy up all those beautiful hats. What am I to do? Ah, I must simply make you my exclusive milliner!

Dearest Coco, what is that creative little mind of yours dreaming up today? All my friends are saying that you will be famous one day! Maybe one day people all over the world will be talking about you. Maybe women will be wearing not just your hats, but dresses, coats, lingerie or maybe fragrances and bags and…oh my dear, I could go on and on.

Well my dear, I must go now. I am so exhausted from my theatre performance last night. It was a full house and we received a standing ovation.

Ps. I have popped in a little photo of me from the magazine in that gorgeous hat! I look quite stunning don’t you think?

Gabrielle Dorziat

Au revoir, Gabrielle x

Footnote – Gabrielle Dorziat was a famous French actress.  Born in 1880, she lived to a ripe old age of 99, dying in 1979.  As a known fashionista in Paris of the time, she was instrumental in making the designs of Coco Chanel famous.

 Meet Coco Chanel

Coco Chanel was born on August 19, 1883…. Happy Birthday!!

She was, and still is, one of the most influential style icons of all time. Everyone knows the Chanel brand, but few know the inspirational rags-to-riches story behind it. Who would have known that this humble girl born in a poor house, would achieve such phenomenal success! Coco Chanel is still regarded as a fashion icon, long after her death.

Coco was known for her incredible ambition and determination throughout her life. She associated with the ‘right circles’ and together with her unique talent, she achieved both success as a business woman and acquired great social prominence.

Lessons from High Achievers

Successful individuals like Coco Chanel, identified their unique talents and developed them to produce remarkable outputs that shaped the world in a variety of ways.

“Hard times arouse an instinctive desire for authenticity”, Coco Chanel.

Your Goals

A good starting point when thinking about your future goals, is to look at what skillsets and areas you are going to focus upon.  Coco would have honed in on her sewing skills and made decisions based on what she knows best and felt comfortable in developing. Developing is an ongoing activity, as one continually needs to review and improve existing processes.

To achieve goals we need to take action

The old model has been to teach, learn and do, however, it is far more effective to begin with action.  Once we take action, then that is in fact ‘doing’ something, and from that, we in turn have learned something.  So it is a bit of a twist on the old school of thinking.  It is well established that people develop competence by taking action.


Coco Chanel’s  initial marketing strategy was to generate a buzz around her new perfume fragrance by hosting what was essentially a promotional event, where she invited a group of elite friends to dine with her in an elegant restaurant. The success was immediate and phenomenal. Chanel’s friend  exclaimed: “It was like a winning lottery ticket!”

Business Action

Amazing people like Coco Chanel, Henry Ford, Thomas Edison and Helena Rubinstein, all have one thing in common – they all became multi-millionaires without going to a Business School! Instead they chose to get into ‘business action’ and learn from experience.  They just DID IT!

Class Activity:

You have been given a new product to promote.  You need to make it known to the public and to approach retailers to place this product in their stores.

  • What is the product? (The world is your oyster! Let your imagination run wild!)
  • What are your strategies to market and develop the product, that will encourage the public to buy it?

Questions:  some research on Coco

  • What Christian name was Coco given at birth?
  • How did she learn to sew?
  • In what year did Coco open her millinery boutique at 21 Rue Cambon, Paris?
  • What very successful product was launched on May 5, 1921?

Our historical greats and their achievements are a solid foundation of proof for teachers, parents and students, that determination, hard work and commitment pay off. This provides an effective way of reinforcing work ethics and an appreciation of how others have, not only changed our world, but truly encouraged and inspired our generation.

Explore how Meridian High School has been raising aspirations by becoming an AMAZING PEOPLE SCHOOL!

Visit Amazing People Schools

Invite Albert Einstein, Marie Curie, Harriet Tubman, Michelangelo and others, into the classroom. Inspire pupils with their stories.

Character Education Through The Power Of Storytelling!

We put amazing stories into the hands of students. Amazing People like Marie Curie, Abraham Lincoln, Harriet Tubman and Mahatma Gandhi, demonstrated integrity, passion, courage, tenacity and vision. These are just some of the characteristics that inspire students to achieve amazing things.

Our interactive story world and resources have been developed to support cross-curricular learning, character education and inspire the amazing people of tomorrow.  Within our new Amazing People Schools site, you will find both Teacher and Student Zones, packed with engaging and unique resources!

Demonstrations and trials available. Please contact our education team HERE.

You can download our handbook HERE.


Amazing People Schools is a division of Amazing People Worldwide – a global organization that helps individuals and businesses achieve their full potential. 

FOUNDER – Dr Charles Margerison is a Chartered Education Psychologist and has consulted widely for major organizations in the fields of organizational and educational psychology. He was previously Professor of Management at Cranfield University, UK, and the University of Queensland, Australia. Dr Margerison founded Amazing People Worldwide in 2006 and is supported by a dedicated global team. He previously co-founded Emerald Insights, and Team Management Systems and has authored more than 30 books.