Apr 032012
Givenchy Audrey Hepburn Together

Givenchy and Audrey Hepburn Together

Fashion Designer Hubert de Givenchy was born to a wealthy family 1927 in Beauvais, France. He stands an impressive 6′ 6″ inches in height.
He studied in Paris at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts  and his first job in fashion was for Jacques Fath in Paris in 1945.

He then worked briefly for Robert Piguet and for Lucien Lelong (1946) and with with Lelong’s assistants, Pierre Balmain and Christian Dior.

His final induction into fashion was with Elsa Schiaparelli between 1947 and 1951.

Cate Blanchett wearing Givenchy

Cate Blanchett wearing a Givenchy gown

He opened the House of Givenchy in 1952 and named his first collection after Bettina Graziani, Paris’s top model at the time.

Hubert de Givenchy’s designs leapt to international recognition when Audrey Hepburn wore his white dress in Billy Wilder’s film ‘Sabrina’.

From then on, Audrey Hepburn came to epitomise the Givenchy style of the 50’s and 60’s along with Jackie Kennedy.

It was the death of John F Kennedy that brought global attention to Givenchy dresses. When John F.Kennedy was assasinated, the world witnessed a mourning Kennedy family all dressed in Givenchy clothes. Jackie Kennedy ordered a Givenchy dress for the funeral, which was especially flown in from Paris. It is said, that at that time, that Givenchy possessed individual patterns sheets for every female member of the Kennedy family.

In 1988, Givenchy sold his business to Moet Hennessy-Louis Vuitton (LVMH).

Following his retirement in 1995, John Galliano, a graduate from St. Martin’s School of Art in London took Givenchys place as head of design.

Galliano’s first collection for Givenchy combined extravagance with the elegant restraint of Givenchy and injected a new competition and creativity into the French haute couture.

In 1996 as Galliano was switching to Dior, a fellow Englishman and another alumni of St. Martins, Alexander McQueen became head of design where he remained until 2001.


Givenchy Couture 2010/2011

At this point, Julien Macdonald became the new Artistic Director of Women for Givenchy.

Since 2005, the creative side has been headed by Riccardo Tisci.

In January 2007, La Poste issued postage stamps for the St. Valentine’s Day designed by Givenchy.


 4:24 am  Fashion
Jan 162011

Born in Paris in 1929, Ted Lapidus opened his Haute Couture House and a Boutique for Men and Women in Marbeuf in 1957.

It was in 1963 that he was admitted as a member of the Haute Couture Federation, that same year he presented his first fashion collection in 1963. In 1968 Lapidus opened the “Rive Gauche” boutique on the Saint-Germain-des-Près square with the aim of presenting the “first Haute Couture proposition targeted for the twenty-year-old generation”

Lapidus was considered the creator and pioneer of the unisex fashion look and is credited with introducing a military and safari look into haute couture.  He is credited as the first designer to put Military style shoulder straps on both male and female clothing, and with making blue jeans part of the mainstream of fashion design.

Ted Lapidus gained prominence in the 1960s when French celebrities such as Brigitte Bardot, Twiggy and John Lennon. Lapidus was the first designer to persuade Twiggy to wear a suit and tie rather than a mini-skirt and Lapidus designed the white suit that John Lennon wore on the cover of The Beatles’ Abbey Road album.

The early 80s saw Olivier Lapidus succeeds his father and becomes the Artistic Director of the House of Lapidus. He went on to create and present his first Haute Couture collection in July 1989.

In 1995 Jacques Konckier who at the time held the license for the “Parfums Ted Lapidus”, acquired the entire Ted Lapidus operation. The Haute Couture collection autumn winter 94/95, who gave the ” 33 rd Dé d’Or ” was shown at the Musée des tissus de Lyon .

Since 1997 Olivier Lapidus has used technology and research to inject into high fashion unusual combinaitions of colours and materials, highlighted by new techniques of printing and weaving.

Lapidus died in Cannes in 2008.


 11:30 pm  Fashion
Jan 152011

russian haute coutureThe actual term ‘haute couture’ is protected by law and according to the Syndical Chamber for Haute Couture, “only those companies mentioned on the list drawn up each year by a commission domiciled at the Ministry for Industry are entitled to avail themselves thereof”.

The criteria to which a fashion house must adhere in order to be categorised haute couture were laid down in 1945 and updated in 1992.

These rules are simple, to be designated as haute couture a minimum of fifteen people must be employed at the workshops and must present to the press in Paris each season (spring/summer and autumn/winter) a collection of at least thirty-five runs consisting of models for daytime wear and evening wear.

As of 2010 members of the Syndicate Chamber of Parisian Couture are as follows:

Adeline AndreAnne Valerie Hash:  Chanel: Christian Dior : Franck Sorbier.

Givenchy : Christian Lacroix : Dominique Sirop : Jean Paul Gaultier : Maurizio Galante : Stephane Rolland.

Agnes B

Agnes B. opened her first boutique with a display of recut French workers’ uniforms. Now including perfume, she believes you have to let beauty express itself. Visit Agnes B

Alice Temperley

The Temperley London label was officially launched at London Fashion Week in September 2000 and has subsequently grown to become a highly desirable brand with global recognition. Visit Alice Temperley

Alberta Ferretti

In a world taking shape in harmony, Ferretti’s universal symbols of conscience, peace and love transform the traditional concepts of earth, sex and money.


Alexander McQueen

Dubbed ‘enfant terrible’, Alexander McQueen has manipulated his own fashion career to become one of the youngest to achieve ‘British Designer of the Year’ in 1996. Visit Alexander Mc Queen

Alexandre Herchcovitch

Born in São Paulo, Brazil, on 21 July 1971 Alexandre Herchcovitch, developed both his love and basic skills of fashion design through his mother, Regina Herchcovitch. Visit Alexandre Herchcovitch

Amanda Wakely

Amanda Wakely was one of Princess Diana’s favourite designers. Her style is best described as elegant and understated. Visit Amanda Wakeley

Angelo Tarlazzi

He was designated by Guy Laroche, shortly before his death, as his successor in haute-couture. Angelo Tarlazzi took up the offer from 1989 to 1993, while continuing to direct his own fashion house. Visit Angelo Tarlazzi

Anne Demeulemeester

Born in Belgium in 1959, Ann Demeulemmeester studied at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Belgium between 1978 and 1981. Visit Anne Demeulemeester

Antoine & Lili

Originally just a small lively store in Paris, Antoine & Lili has many stores in France and can also now be found in London, Japan & Singapore. Visit Antoine & Lili

Anya Hindmarch

Hindmarch has become the handbag source for top designers, synthesizing Grace Kelly style with unexpected details like rhinestone glitter and fob watches. Visit Anya Hindmarch


Armani’s Tailored clothing, dresses, sportswear, evening wear and accessories are made from the world’s most exquisite fabrics and produced to the highest standards.Visit Giorgio Armani

Barbara Bui

Official website of French fashion designer who has shops in Paris, Milan and New York. Site however, is entirely in french. Visit Barbara Bui

Bernhard Willhelm

During his studies he assisted Walter van Beirendonck, Alexander Mc Queen, Vivienne Westwood and Dirk Bikkembergs. His first collection was launched during Paris Fashion Week in 1999. Visit Bernhard Willhelm

Betty Jackson

Betty Jackson was born in Bacup, Lancashire in 1949 and since then has gone on to become an internationally renowned fashion designer. Visit Betty Jackson


Founded in 1856 when the young Thomas Burberry, a draper, opened his first shop in Basingstoke, Hampshire, England.Visit Burberry


Every day, 1500 employees produce 14,00 suits in the ever growing Canali empire. Visit Canali


Carven have much to be proud of and has built an excellent reputation over the years dressing queens, princesses and empresses not to mention the post-war stars of the screen. Visit Carven


Roberto Cavalli, born in Florence, Italy on November 15, 1940 was raised in modest surroundings. He had rather strong artistic traditions, his mother was a tailor and his grandfather a Florentine impressionist painter. Visit Cavalli

Calvin Klein

Calvin Klein graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology in 1962. Now a household name internationally. Visit Calvin Klien


What started as a weaving shop has now grown into one of the worlds most distinguished designer brands under the influence of Nino Cerrutti. Visit Cerrutti


Designers of feminine contemporary lingerie and swimwear. Chiarugi use fabrics, finnishing and embroidery that give a Tailor made feel.Visit Chiarugi


Born in 1883 Coco Chanel became a true matriarch of haute couture. A true visionary she provided women the sort of comfort and ease that had previously been reserved to men’s fashions. Visit  Chanel


Chloe was established in 1952 and has gone on to produce such talented designers as Karl Lagerfeld, Martine Sitbon and Stella McCartney.Visit Chloe

Christian Dior

The Christian Dior universe extends from fragrance to fashion. The latest beauty tips and trends, fashion shows and season by season wear can be seen on this site. Visit Christian Dior

Christian Lacroix

Now officially part of the Haute outure establishment, Christian was born on May 16, 1951 in Arles, France. He studied Art History at the University of Montpellier and continued his studies in Paris. Visit Christian Lacroix

Cristobal Balenciaga

In 1895 Cristobal Balenciaga was born in Gueteria in the Spanish Basque country. At the age of 24 he opened his first fashion house in San Sebastian. Visit Cristobal Balenciaga


Smart American casualwear, the Diesel site offers store location and online demonstration of its latest clothing range.Visit Diesel

Dolce & Gabbana

The Dolce & Gabbana trademark which has by now toured the world faithfully representing the new generation of ‘Made in Italy’. Visit Dolce and Gabbana

Dominique Sirop

Dominique Sirop joined the House of Yves Saint Laurent at the age of 17. He then assisted Hubert de Givenchy for 12 years. Visit Dominique Sirop

Donna Karan

Donna Karan is a New York based designer of high fashion apparel that targets businessmen and working women.


Dries Van Noten

Dries Van Noten was born in Antwerp in 1958, into a three-generations-old family of Tailors and studied at the Antwerp Academy. Visit Dries Van Noten

Elie Saab

Commissions for Elie Saab have been been pouring in since he dressed Queen Rania of Jordan for her coronation, and Halle Berry for the Oscars in both 2002 and 2003. Visit Elie Saab

Elspeth Gibson London

Elspeth Gibson London has enjoyed phenomenal success ever since her first catwalk show. Elspeth has been hailed as one of the UK’s new leading designers.Visit Elspeth Giibson

Emmanuel Ungaro

Emannuel Ungaro was born in Aix-en-Provence to an Italian Tailor. At aged 22, he moved to Paris and at 25 he began designing for the House of Cristobal Balenciaga. Visit Emmanuel Ungaro


Italian style brought together by a family with a passion for the arts and design.


fendi bag


Founded in 1918 in Rome, Fendi has since exemplified the highest standards of original Italian fashion. Their exclusive handbags and scarves are crafted from the highest quality materials and are a must for the today’s woman of discriminating taste.

Visit Fendi

Full Circle

Full Circle has established itself as one the UK’s leading fashion brands whose clothing is designed by some of the UK’s best home-grown talent.


Gaspard Yurkievich

Gaspard took an internship with Thierry Mugler and then with Jean Paul Gaultier. who combine the creative flair of London with the historic grandeur of France. Visit Gaspard Yurkievich


Hubert de Givenchy’s designs leapt to instant international recognition when Audrey Hepburn wore his white dress in Billy Wilder’s film ‘Sabrina’. Visit Givenchy


When Gucci opened its first store in Florence in 1921, few could have guessed that it would become the international success that it is today. Visit Gucci

Hanae Mori

Hanae Mori is the only Asian designer to be accepted as a member of La Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne. In 1951 she opened her first studio in Tokyo.


Helmut Lang

Helmut Lang has already launched successful jeans and underwear collections as well as designs for sunglasses. Now they offer a signature fragrance. Visit Helmut Lang


Hermes began life as a saddelry but it soon became apparent that Thierry Hermes was capable of much more. Visit Hermes

Issey Miyake

Online you can see a video and other extracts from the Issey Miyake exhibition which is currently showing at the Museum of Contemporary art in Tokyo. Visit Issey Miyake

Jean-Charles de Castelbajac

At the age of 20, Jean-Charles de Castelbajac began his fashion design career. His work is underpinned by the use of colour and a sense of fun. Visit Castelbajac

Jean-Louis Scherrer

In 1962 Jean-Louis Scherrer created his Haute Couture house located at the 182, rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré in Paris. Visit Scherrer

Jean-Paul Gaultier

According to Gaultier, clothing is like a second skin, something in which we feel good, and live. He has feminized men’s jackets and fluidified the suit. More information on Jean Paul Gaultier ONLINE AT YOOX on Jean Paul Gaultier

Jenny Packham

Inspired by extentive travels, historical knowledge of costume and with her sublime appreciation of colour, Packham has fast become one the UK’S most regarded designers. Visit Jenny Packham

Jil Sander

Jil Sander is a successful German designer, born in 1943 and a gradute in textiles. Visit Jil Sander

John Galliano

John Galliano: the name in fashion, ready to wear, accessories and leathergoods. The first Englishman to head up a french couture house. Visit John Galliano

Jean-Paul Knott

Jean-Pauls career began with a placement with Yves Saint Laurent in Paris and eventually assisted Saint Laurent himself on Haute Couture. Visit Jean-Paul Knott

Joyce Ridings

Joyce Ridings is a British womenswear designer who has been successfully operating at an international level for over 25 years. Visit Joyce Ridings

Junya Watanabe

Junya Watanabe is a Japanese fashion designer, originally the protege of Comme des Garçons designer Rei Kawakubo. In 2009, First Lady Michelle Obama wore a blue-patterned cardigan designed by Watanabe on a visit to the Royal Opera House during her and President Barack Obama’s trip to London

Katherine Hamnett

A global fashion designer, who’s designs are available in large stores specialising in mens and womens wear. She is an active campaigner on environmental and social issues. Visit Katharine Hamnett.com/


Since his first collection in April 1970, Kenzo Takada has kept the world amazed by the world’s own wonders. “The world is beautiful” is his claim. Visit Kenzoki


Lanvin’s lines are seen in all the luxury markets of Europe, the Far East, the Middle East and the USA. Lanvin fragrances, ties and eyewear are the world over. Visit Lanvin

Lolita Lempicka

The enchanting world of the french designer Lolita Lempicka is noted for its girly clothes and signature perfume.


Louis Feraud

In 1950 Louis Féraud created his first “Maison de Couture” in Cannes and by 1955 had established a Couture House in Paris on the rue du Faubourg Saint Honoré. Visit Louis Feraud

Louis Vuitton

Leading the avant-garde of fashion without compromising traditional craftsmanship of luxury leather goods, Louis Vuitton is also active in other creative spheres: ready-to-wear, shoes, watches and jewelry Visit Louis Vuitton

Marc Jacobs

Born in New York in 1963, Marc Jacobs has enjoyed a meteoric rise including being design director for Louis Vuitton. Visit Marc Jacobs

Michael Kors

Michael Kors was born and raised on Long Island, a suburb of New York City. He attended The Fashion Institute of Technology, where he studied fashion design. Visit Michael Kors


Visit this milanese designer for the latest collections, store locator and gallery. Visit Missoni


Franco Moschino became an illustrator for Gianni Versace until he broke away and launched his own label in 1983. He started off with jeans and casual wear which was quickly followed by shoes, lingerie, accessories and much more… Visit Moschino

Nina Ricci

Born in Turin in 1883, Nina Ricci opened her first couture house at the age of 20. Her talents quickly led to the creation of the Nina Ricci that we know today. Visit Nina Ricci


Oki-ni is an independent, London-based design group which works in collaboration with a range of globally renowned brands and designers to create unique products. Visit Oki-ni/

Olivier Theyskens

As a 20-year-old, Olivier Theyskens dropped out of La Cambre art school in Brussels to start his own label. Visit Olivier Theyskens

Oscar De La Renta

Oscar de la Renta, left his native Dominican Republic at 18 years of age to study painting at the Academy of San Fernando in Madrid. Visit Oscar De La Renta

Paco Rabanne

Today Rabanne constantly seeks to surprise and innovate, but is always faithful to the image of a woman who is both sensual and intelligent. Visit Paco Rabanne

Paul Smith

Profile of this prolific and prominent London designer for men and women, renowned for sharp lines and expert Tailoring. Visit Paul Smith

Pierre Balmain

The name Pierre Balmain stands for a unique concept of elegance, a clientele of royalty and film stars, and a fashion hallmark recognized throughout the world. Visit Pierre Balmain

Pierre Cardin

Pierre Cardin has been revolutionising the world of fashion for more than half a century. He is and shall remain a leader with a vision of the future. Visit Pierre Cardin


The ultimate in must-have accessories. Since the mid-1990s, there have been few status symbols as potent as the Prada-embossed silver triangle. Visit Prada

Ralph Lauren

An interesting approach to clothing online. This site is more like a magazine offering useful ideas and suggestions for dressing up.

Visit Ralph Lauren

Romeo Gigli

A highly stylised website from the Italian designer, Romeo Gigli´s a world of art, fashion and design. Visit Romeo Gigli


Sahza is a unique feminine brand targeting the active women through a combination of aesthetic and functional aspects.


Sonia Rykiel

Sonia Rykiel’s is especially noted for her knitwear and her habit for writing random words across her clothing. Still an icon 40 years after she started. Visit Sonia RyKiel

Stella McCartney

Stella McCartney was born in 1972, the daughter of ex-Beatle Sir Paul and Linda McCartney. She now works with Gucci developing her own label as a global luxury brand. Visit Stella Mccartney

Ted Baker

Ted Baker online store: designer clothing and accessories for men, women, boys and girls – no ordinary designer label. Visit Ted Baker

Ted Lapidus

Born in Paris in 1929, Ted Lapidus opened his Haute Couture House and a Boutique for Men and Women in Marbeuf in 1957. Visit Ted Lapidus

Thierry Mugler

In the universe of French fashion, Thierry Mugler appears as a multi-faceted artist.Visit Thierry Mugler

Tom Ford

Tom Ford was born in Austin, Texas in 1962, but spent most of his childhood years in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Visit Tom Ford


Parisian haute couture, with boutiques in Paris. Torrente is owned by Rose Mett, sister of the designer Ted Lapidus. In 1968 she opened her first boutique in Saint Honore Paris.Visit Torrente

Valentin Yudashkin

Russian designer of both haute couture and prêt-a-porter, and accessories. In 2010 he redesigned Russia’s military uniforms, creating 85 designs to dress all branches of the Russian armed services.Visit Valentin Yudashkin

Giannni Versace

I’ve always said that I would like to mix rock and simplicity because this is fashion, they are the extremes – chic and shock:- a quote from the late Gianni Versace. Visit Gianni Versace

Viktor and Rolf

Viktor & Rolf is an Amsterdam-based fashion house. The company was founded in 1993 by designers Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren. Visit Vikto & Rolf

Vivienne Westwood

Vivienne Westwood was 30 years old when she opened her first boutique in 1971. Her designs have stunned the world since. Visit Vivienne Westwood

Yohji Yamamoto

Yamamoto’s various awards and recognitions include the French Chevalier de l’Order des Arts et Lettres and the Fashion Group of America’s “Designer of the Year”. Visit Yohji Yamamoto

Yves Saint Laurent

In June 1999 The Council of Fashion Designers of America presented Yves Saint Laurent with the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’. Visit Yves Saint Laurent or ONLINE AT YOOX


With the unleashing of his ‘Collection blanche’, dedicated to Jackie Kennedy in 1967, Valentino Garavani went from famous to superstardom. Visit Valentino

Zandra Rhodes

The classic garments of Zandra Rhodes from the late 60s and 70s are rapidly becoming some of the hottest collectibles on the US and UK scene. Visit Zandra Rhodes


The move toward a less formal work wardrobe is no casual trend. Without the suit and tie as a guideline, however, the obvious question arises “What should one wear?” Visit Zegna

 11:51 pm  Fashion
Jan 032011
Didier Grumbach

Didier Grumbach is President of the Chambre syndicale de la haute couture

The Fédération française de la couture, du prêt-à-porter des couturiers et des créateurs de mode was established in 1973.
It derives from the Chambre syndicale de la haute couture created in 1868. When people refer to Haute Couture it is usually this organisation that they are referring to.

Since 1935 its registered office has been located at 100 rue du faubourg Saint-Honoré, Paris 8e.

The Fédération française de la couture is the executive organ of each Chambre syndicale and is run by the elected president Didier Grumbach, who continuously acts with the authority entrusted to him by the fashion industry.

The Fédération française de la couture, du prêt-à-porter des couturiers et des créateurs de mode is composed of:

* the Chambre syndicale de la haute couture (created in 1868), presided, like the Fédération française de la couture, by Didier Grumbach.
Its members are the couture houses benefiting from the “haute couture” label. This label is a legally protected appellation which can only be used by couture houses which have been granted it.
Such houses are listed on a decree issued yearly by a special commission of the Ministry of Industry.
Jacques Mouclier is the Président d’Honneur of this Chambre Syndicale.

* the Chambre syndicale du prêt-à-porter des couturiers et des créateurs de mode(created in 1973) which is composed of Couture Houses and Fashion Designers of women’s ready-to-wear. Its President is Guillaume de Seynes HERMES Fashion House) and Vice-PresidentNathalie Rykiel SONI RYKIEL Fashion House).

* The Chambre syndicale de la mode masculine (created in 1973) and composed of the Couture Houses and Fashion Designers of men’s ready-to-wear. The President d’Honneur is Pierre Cardin, the President Patrick Thomas HERMES Fashion House) and the Vice-President Thierry Andretta LANVIN Fashion House).

Together with the 3 Chambres, the Federation has about 100 members.


 6:59 am  Fashion
Dec 042010
John Galliano for Christian Dior

John Galliano for Christian Dior

Each year, in January and July, Paris hosts about 30 shows during the haute couture and 30 men’s wear fashion shows and again in March and October.

Spring Summer 2011 from Monday, January 24th to Thursday, January 27th, 2011

Fall-Winter 2011 – 2012 from Monday, July 4th to Thursday, July 7th, 2011

The Federation sets the shows schedules to avoid time conflicts and to enable both the Press and the buyers to cover the entire collections.

Since 1982, the Federation has been using prestigious locations in the heart of Paris to present the shows: the Cour Carrée and Cour Napoléon in the Louvre, then the Jardin des Tuileries and later the restored Cour Carrée.

In 1994, the rooms of the Carrousel du Louvre were built after a project conceived at the initiative of the Federation, the latter being in charge of the management during collection time. Since then the Carrousel has been the central point from which the Federation sought locations close enough one from the other in order to save transportation time. As a matter of fact, the Federation provides journalists and buyers with transportation means to commute between the various fashion shows locations.

A collaboration has developed in order to organize the various show rooms exhibiting at the same time as the fashion shows and a co-ordination of the Milan and Paris schedules has taken place as well to ensure cohesion of the European presentations.

The schedule issued by the Federation is a strong visibility means for the brands as it is sent to some 2,000 journalists and to French and foreign buyers who currently attend fashion shows in Paris.

The shows in Paris are fashion highlights of the year. designers such as John Galliano demonstrate their skill in enviable surroundings

For Galliano, head designer at Christain Dior the use of the Versailles Palace was a masterstroke. For one night only, the Palace was transformed into an expression of the glory of fashion.

Of the 200 or so couture clients in the world – that’s right, only aproximately 200 people in the world can afford these clothes, among them in the audience were Kate Hudson, Sofia Coppola, Juliette Binoche, Monica Bellucci and Charlize Theron.

Spring Summer 2011 from Monday, January 24th to Thursday, January 27th, 2011

Fall-Winter 2011 – 2012 from Monday, July 4th to Thursday, July 7th, 2011

 11:01 am  Fashion
Oct 232010
Anne Valérie Hash 2008 Couture Collection

Anne Valérie Hash 2008 Couture Collection

Anne Valerie Hash was born in Paris in 1971.

In 1991 she began her artistic education at The Duperré Art School.

In 1995, she received a diploma from the Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne  and has designed for such labels as Nina Ricci, Chloe and Chanel.

Anne Valerie Hash Spring 2011

Anne Valerie Hash Spring 2011

In June of 2003, she received the ANDAM prize and in June 2009 Christine Albanel, Minister of Culture and Communication, personally rewarded her with the prestigious insignia of the Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres.

Anne Valérie Hash received the Official Label of Haute Couture in January of 2008.

In March of 2008 she launched ANNE VALERIE HASH MADEMOISELLE, a line for girls from 4 to 14 years old.


 2:39 pm  Fashion
Aug 312006
Very young Yves Saint Laurent

A very young Yves Saint Laurent with drawing

Yves Saint Laurent was born in 1936 in Algeria and died in June 2008.

Having won the first prize in the International Wool Secretariat contest in 1954, he went to work for Christian Dior as a young designer.

After Diors death in 1957, Saint Laurent became Haute Couture designer. The following year saw him win the Neiman-Marcus Award.

His creations have often caused a scandal, from the first see-through blouses (1968) to his perfume, Opium.

After fulfilling his military obligations he opened his own Haute Couture house in 1962 financed by Pierre Berge. He opened his Rive Gauche boutiques for women were in 1966 and a men’s wear line was added in 1974. In 1981 he was became a member of the Council of Fashion Designers of America. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York made him the first living designer to be so honoured.

Renowned for ethnic themes and bright colors Saint Laurent believes he is the last true couturier and maintains the highest standards of classic cut and Tailoring. He was presented with a Victoria and Albert award in 1995. In 1996 the year Saint Laurent became the first courturier to show his Haute Couture show live on the Internet he decided to stop making big fashion shows for his Pret-a-Porter collection after 30 years of doing so.

The company has had its troubles in 1996 Pierre Berge was fined for insider trading after selling his shares in the company before the release of poor trading figures.

Yves Saint Laurent is also the subject of a number of retrospective exhibitions including the Hermitage, St. Petersburg , Russia and Musee des Arts de la Mode, Louvre, Paris.

In January 2000, following the acquisition of Yves Saint Laurent and YSL Beauté by the Gucci Group, Designer Tom Ford assumed the position of Creative Director of Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche and YSL Beauté.  Ford works with all creative teams at YSL to define the overall image and positioning of the YSL brand including all product categories and communication activities. He refocused the brand with great success.

Tom Ford’s success in the fashion industry has been recognized by a number of awards including Womenswear Designer of the Year for Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche (2001) and Accessory Designer of the Year for Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche (2002)


 11:50 am  Fashion
Aug 302006


Valentino with Giancarlo Giammetti his business partner

Valentino Clemente Ludovico Garavani was born 11 May 1932 and best known as Valentino, is an Italian fashion designer and founder of the Valentino brand and company. His main lines include Valentino, Valentino Garavani, Valentino Roma, and R.E.D. Valentino.

Valentino became interested in men’s and women’s fashion while in primary school in his native Italy, when he apprenticed under his aunt Rosa. At 12, Valentino moved to Paris to pursue this interest with the help of his mother Teresa de Biaggi and his father Mauro Garavani. There he studied at the École des Beaux-Arts and at the Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne.

His first choice for an apprenticeship in Paris, was with Jacques Fath, then Balenciaga. He then joined Guy Laroche for 2 years. Clients at that time included Marie-Hélène de Rothschild and Elizabeth Taylor who marveled at Valentino’s style of white pleats and animal prints.

Valentino Couture Evening Gown

Valentino Couture Evening Gown

After five years, Valentino left Jean Desses and joined Guy Laroche, in his “tiny, tiny” fashion house. But after discussions with his parents, he decided to return to Italy and set up in Rome in 1959.

Valentino’s international debut took place in 1962 in Florence, the Italian fashion capital of the time. His first show at the Pitti Palace was welcomed as a true revelation and the young couturier was deluged by orders from foreign buyers and enthusiastic comments from the press.

With the unleashing of his ‘Collection Blanche’, dedicated to Jackie Kennedy in 1967, Valentino Garavani went from famous to superstardom.

On September 4, 2007 Valentino announced that he would retire in January 2008. from the world stage after his last Haute-Couture show in Paris. He delivered his last women’s ready-to-wear show in Paris on October 4.

His final show received a standing ovation from the entire audience, which included hundreds of notable names from all areas of show business. Many models returned to show for Valentino’s last haute couture show, including Eva Herzigova, Naomi Campbell, Claudia Schiffer, Nadja Auermann, Karolina Kurkova and Karen Mulder.


 4:49 pm  Fashion
Aug 302006
Pierre Cardin Designer

Pierre Cardin Designer

Pierre Cardin has been revolutionising the world of fashion for more than half a century. He was born in Italy but is better known as a French designer of haute couture fashion.

On 16 October 2009, Pierre Cardin was nominated Goodwill Ambassador of the United Nations.

Pierre Cardin is an enigmatic fashion figure with a career spanning over 6 decades. Born in 1922 Pierre Cardin arrived in Paris in 1945. He started to work for Paquin and then Schiaparelli made the acquaintance of Jean Cocteau and Christian Berard with whom he designed numerous costumes and masks for several films.
In 1946 he began to work for Christian Dior.

Four year later in 1950 Pierre Cardin started his own fashion house on the Rue Richepanse. By 1953 he had exhibited his first fashion collection and in 1954 his “bubble dresses” caught the imagination of the world.

A successful year Pierre Cardin opened his first Paris boutiques, Adam and Eve. On his first trip to Japan in 1957 he was made an honorary professor at the stylism school of Bunka Fukusoi . This same school in 1962 created the Pierre Cardin Prize awarded to the best designer of the year.Pierre Cardin created a worldwide fashion movvement by presenting for the first time in 1959 a collection of ready-to-wear for women at the Printemps department store in Paris . He was expelled from the Chambre Syndical because of this but was soon re-instated.

250 students presented his famous cylinder line collection for men in 1960. A year later, he started distributing ready-to-wear and accessories for men, and by 1963 he was doing the same for women. His first fashion collection for children was presented in Paris in 1966 and in that year he also opened his first childrens shop on the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré in Paris .

In 1977 Pierre Cardin received the first of his three “Dé d’Or” for French Haute Couture, executed by Cartier, in honor of the most creative collection of the season. He also won this award in 1979 and 1982. Known for his experimental groundbreaking approach he was the first foreign couturier to present in China a fashion collection for men and women in 1979.

Pierre Cardin celebrated his 30 years of fashion creation at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in 1980 and inaugurated his new offices on 53 East 57th Street . The following year he opened a showroom in the Gardens of Temple in Peking . This event marked the explosion of his international reputation. The Sogetsu Kaikan Museum in 1982 hosted a general retrospective of the creations of Pierre Cardin spanning the previous 30 years. Awarded the Ascot Brun award in Milan as the most creative man of the year he went on to win a Fashion Oscar at the Paris Opera House. Cardin signed contract with the USSR in 1986 for the local production of ready-to-wear for men, women and children and in 1987, he opened a 10,000 square meter showroom. The Victor and Albert Museum in London in 1989 presented in the 20th Century Gallery a retrospective covering 40 years of women’s fashion and 30 years of men’s fashion. It went on to be shown in Canada , Mexico and China .

The 1990s again saw Pierre Cardin boast a number of firsts. Moscow 1991 saw Pierre Cardin present a fashion show on the Red Square before a crowd of 200,000. In 1993 Cardin presented his first fashion collections in Vietnam . The 26th Olympic Games in Atlanta saw him present his Evolutive fashion collection designe specially for the event. In 1997 the inauguration of a retrospective exhibit of 50 years of Pierre Cardin’s creations at the Espace Cardin was conducted.

The presentation of his eighth ready-to-wear fashion collection for women called Evolution Fall/Winter occurred in 2000. A retrospective exhibition took place in Tokyo the same year to celebrate a career spanning 50 years. On Jannuary 10 th 2003 a retrospective fashion show took place at the Palazzo Corsini ( Firenze ).


 4:39 pm  Fashion
Aug 302006

The name Pierre Balmain stands for a unique concept of design elegance, a clientele of royalty and film stars, and a fashion hallmark recognized throughout the world as Haute Couture.

pierre balmain haute coutureThe name Pierre Balmain is synonymous with elegance. The name conjures associations with a clientele composed of royalty and film stars spring to mind. Pierre Balmain was born in St Jean de Maurienne, Savoie in 1914. He trained with both Molyneux and Lucien Lelong before opening his own Haute Couture in Paris following World War 2.

A success from its outset, the 1960s were a particularly rewarding time for Balmain, whose uncluttered fashion designs focused on structure and contrasts of cut and style.

Balmain designed personal wardrobes for numerous international stars, including Brigitte Bardot, Marlene Dietrich, and Katherine Hepburn among others.. This period also marked Balmain’s first meeting with Her Majesty Queen Sirikit of Thailand , who chose him to be her personal couturier.

The ready-to-wear division, founded in the 1970s gradually made an impact on the market and now holds some 220 licenses worldwide.

With the death of Pierre Balmain in 1982, the torch was passed to Erik Mortensen, his personal assistant since 1951 and closest collaborator. Mortensen maintained the House’s traditions but developed and updated styles and designs in the spirit of its founder. In recognition of his achievements he won the France Haute Couture Golden Thimble Awards for his Autumn-Winter 1983/1984 collection. He was again awarded this honour in 1987.

Following Mortensens departure from the House of Balmain in 1990, he was replaced by Hervé-Pierre, who served as fashion designer for 3 years for both the Haute Couture and ready-to-wear collections.

In 1993 American fashion designer Oscar de la Renta signed his first Haute Couture collection for Pierre Balmain and remained there till 2002. A decline has been witnessed in recent years not halted with Haute Couture designs by Laurent Mercier and then Christophe Lebourg.


 4:35 pm  Fashion