The legacy of fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld

As the fashion world mourns the loss of the icon, "GMA" takes a closer look at his life and the legacy he leaves behind at Chanel and beyond.
4:40 | 02/20/19

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Transcript for The legacy of fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld
Now to the man known as the emperor of fashion, Karl lagerfeld. The creative genius behind Chanel for more than 35 years is leaving behind an incredible legacy. Deborah Roberts is here with that. I know that jacket you have on right now. That's Chanel. As your mom used to say, cannot help it. I had to pay homage to the man who with his personal style and arguably his professional creative genius. So many reeling today from the loss of Karl lagerfeld who unapologetically cut a new and daring path in whatever he touched. His signature style unmistakable. The those fingerless gloves, that silver ponyta oversized sunglass. Seeing him from afar he absolutely had this larger than life persona. It was physical appearance. I mean, he looked like some sort of strange combination of sort of edwardian rock star designer from your imagination. Reporter: An iconic look showcasing Karl lagerfeld's larger than life personality. Have to be clothes of today with background of tradition with proportions of something new. Reporter: German born lagerfeld who got his start in Paris in the 1950s carried on the legacy of coco Chanel while bringing an edge to the classic tweed jack little black dress, quilted bags and custom jewelry. He didn't invent anything. He reconstituted it for a very large group of people the only version of Chanel that they really know is Karl lagerfeld's version. Reporter: Even finding inspiration in everyday objects like milk cartoons, hula hoops and grocery baskets for his most quirky designs. He always incorporated whatever was going on in the world around him so he would produce collections distinctively Chanel but always felt like they were connected to the contemporary times. Reporter: News of the designer's death sparked an outpouring of tributes on Instagram. Fellow designer Marc Jacobs calling him an inspiration. Diane Von Furstenberg saying he was a perceptive witness of our times. Those alongside those from models like Cindy Crawford and Kim Kardashian who labels him a true legend. Vogue's longtime editor in chief saying, Karl was brilliant, he was wicked. He was funny, he was generous beyond measure and he was deeply kind. I will miss him so very much. Lagerfeld who famously lost 90 pounds in 13 months even authoring a book called the Karl lagerfeld diet sat down with our Diane sawyer on "Gma" in 2002. And did you ever fall off the wagon? No, no. I have lots of discipline and I have a very fascist mind with myself, not with other but myself I'm a fascist. Reporter: While the fashion icon clearly adored women, he rarely held his sharp tongue. Famously calling Adele a little too fat and chiding Meryl Streep for her cheapness after lagerfeld said she turned down one of his designs. Fashion has to go with time. If fashion doesn't go with time fashion would be lost. Reporter: But lagerfeld did have a softer side and was a master of maxims, "The world according that Karl," where he acknowledges he's down to Earth, just not of this Earth. His loss will be felt in Hollywood especially with the oscars just days ago. Julianne won her Oscar in 2015 wearing a custom Chanel dress. Her stylest posting this sketch signed by lagerfeld as part of her tribute to the designer yesterday. Lagerfeld never missed a detail or an accessory and as you always mentioned earlier his most beloved accessory his cat choupette who worked near him with items on his desk and loved posing with the cat draped around his neck right there. Quite a guy, right? Such a full life. Such full life. This is really indicative of his work here. Safety pins all around this. This is about lagerfeld. So I had have to it on sale. On sale. On sale, baby. You got that. Looking good. Thank you, deb. Thank you so, so much.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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