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Fendi honors Lagerfeld and fashion’s ‘longest love story’

A video presentation showing the late designer Karl Lagerfeld and his association with Fendi is shown after the Fendi women's Fall-Winter 2019-2020 collection, that was presented in Milan, Italy, Thursday, Feb.21, 2019. | AP Photo/Antonio Calanni

A video presentation showing the late designer Karl Lagerfeld and his association with Fendi is shown after the Fendi women's Fall-Winter 2019-2020 collection, that was presented in Milan, Italy, Thursday, Feb.21, 2019. | AP Photo/Antonio Calanni

MILAN — Fendi paid understated tribute Thursday to Karl Lagerfeld, who died this week and was the Rome-based fashion house’s creative director for 54 years.

The fashion house said in notes for its Milan Fashion Week show that the Fall/Winter 2019-2020 collection “is the final collection designed by Karl Lagerfeld, representing a lifetime of dedication and creation from 1965 until today.”

Reproductions of five of Lagerfeld’s sketches accompanied the notes, summing up the looks. A small card came printed with his signature and the Fendi “F” that had a heart forming the cross-stroke. The date of the designer’s death was on the back: 19-02-2019.

A video recorded before his death showed Lagerfeld being asked to draw himself as he appeared on his first day at Fendi.

“Well, that’s prehistoric,” the designer said. “In the 1960s, we didn’t hold back.”

His personal Fendi preview look: a Cerruti hat over his long hair, dark sunglasses, a printed Lavalliere tie, a yellow-and-red English hunting jacket in Scottish tweed, French-style culottes and a bag that he had found in Milan.

“That was my style. Disreputable,” the late designer told the camera in French.