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What Haute Couture means in France?

fashion & stylestyle tips

1 December 2011


This notion takes us to Charles Frederick Worth (1825-1895), who was the first to create a " home dressmaking " in Paris and who put on for sale of the clothes under his own name as mark. From there, the usage of the term lead to the attachment of a style to his creator.

Daily fashion was irrefutably influenced by the haute couture of Worth and later by his ancient assistant Paul Poiret. Patou, Jeanne Lanvin, Coco Chanel, Schiaparelli, Balenciaga and Christian Dior succeeded one another. Numerous houses of haute couture in 20th century also began developing perfumes, among which some people are always of actuality, for instance the very famous N. 5 of Chanel (1921), Love Love of Patou (1925) or still Arpeggio of Lanvin (1927).

Today, they often classify the world of fashion in two categories: the haute couture and the ready-to-wear clothes. The haute couture collections are made under measure and intended for a special clientelle, they are exclusive and often few pieces are commercialized. 

An officially "haute couture" house must belong to the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture. Three criteria must consequently be filled by the elected representatives: the brand must use the very least 15 wage earners, collections must be introduced in Paris at least twice per year and 35 different pieces have to march. Every follower must be attached to Paris Syndicate Chamber yearly.

Official list of the 11 houses of haute couture in 2011:

• Adeline André

• Ann Valérie Hash

• Gustavolins workshop

• Chanel

• Christian Dior

• Christophe Josse

• Franck Sorbier

• Givenchy

• Jean-Paul Gaultier

• Maurizio Galante

• Stephane Rolland

Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne

100/102 street of the suburb Saint-honoré

75008 Paris

01 42 66 64