Sunday, January 5, 2014

French Designers

Coco Chanel

Chanel was a pioneering French fashion designer whose modernist thought, menswear-inspired fashions, and pursuit of expensive simplicity made her an important figure in 20th-century fashion. Famous for popularizing practical clothes, including pants for women, little black dresses, and box-like collarless jackets with bias edging and brass buttons. Her first fabrics included wool jersey, which was comfortable and easy fitting, but was not considered suitable for fashionable clothes. Coco Chanel was a legend,there have been many books and articles written for her,women crave to own one of her dress.She was the first to make costume jewelry socially acceptable.No designer had an impact on fashion industry as Chanel and still she is considered the best and the most innovative designer of all time.

Coco Chanel ,The Legend

Chanel's Collection

Paul Poiret

Paul was a French courturier the most fashionable dress  designer of pre-World War I Paris.Poiret was the top Haute Couture designer and was particularly noted for his Neoclassical and Orientalist styles, for advocating the replacement of the corset with the brassiere, and for the introduction of the  hobble skirt, a vertical, tight-bottomed style that confined women to mincing steps. “I freed the bust,” boasted Poiret, “and I shackled the legs.”
Paul Poiret dressing a model.
After serving as a designer in the house of Parisian fashion  designer  Charles Frederick Worth, Poiret opened a small shop in Paris in 1903. By 1907 he had been instrumental in reviving the  Empire style, popular in France during the reign of Napoleon I. Inspired by a widespread interest in Eastern art and Russian ballet, he created flamboyant, theatrical designs. His evening gowns, turbans, and harem pants appeared in brilliant shades of purple, red, orange, green, and blue.Paul Poiret created masterpieces in his time and is often considered by many to be the creator of luxury clothes and is referred by many as the King of Fashion.
Paul Poiret

                                                                 Poiret's Collection

Madeleine Vionnet

Madeleine Vionnet was called the "Queen of the bias cut" and "the architect among dressmakers," Vionnet is best-known today for her elegant Grecian-style dresses and for introducing the bias cut to the fashion world. In 1912 she founded her own fashion house, "Vionnet", for a short time just before World War I. The House of Vionnet grew to employ over 1,100 seamstresses and was the first fashion house to create ready to wear (prêt-à-porter) designs from haute couture for sale in the United States. 
In 1922 Vionnet's extravagant designs were inspired by Greek vases and Egyptian frescoes. She invents a "bias" cut to make dresses that fit tightly at the waist and flare out into a bell-shape skirt. 
She designs "seam decorations" decorating visible seams in star or flower shapes in 1925. With her bias cut clothes, Vionnet dominated Haute Couture in the 1930s setting trends with her sensual gowns. Vionnet's vision of the female form revolutionized modern clothing and the success of her unique cuts assured her reputation. 

                                                              Vionnet's Collection

Jeanne Lanvin

Lanvin was a French designer whose work was easily recognizable by her skillful use of embroidery, and her fine craftsmanship. She used a particular shade of blue so often, that it came to be called "Lanvin Blue". For Jeanne Lanvin, women were meant to wear clothes of unabashed femininity, in colours that were pretty, and whose shapes had a "young girl" look. She set the mood with narrow empire-wasted dresses and long trailing sleeves. The fabrics that she used were silk, taffeta, velvet, silk chiffon, organza, lace, tulle, etc. She used a lot of free-flowing ribbons, ruffles, flowers, lace, mirrors, etc., and liked ornamentation like applique, couching, quilting, parallel stitching, and embroidery.She was also a Haute Couture designer.

                                                               Lanvin's Collection

Saint Laurent Paris

The Yves Saint Laurent ready-to-wear collection is to be rebranded Saint Laurent Paris. The change marks the growing influence of the newly promoted creative director Hedi Slimane, who took over in March. The French-born designer has already moved the label's design studio from Paris to his adoptive city of Los Angeles.

Hedi Slimane

 HEDI SLIMANE (pronounced with a silent "h" - Edi Sli-man), is a French-born, Italian-Tunisian designer and photographer, best known for changing the silhouette of men's fashion to super-skinny during his time at Dior Homme. Since leaving Dior, he has worked as a photographer, famously documenting British rock star Pete Doherty and the Berlin club scene. He was also the man who prompted Karl Lagerfeld to lose almost 90 lbs in weight in order that the Chanel designer could buy his clothes. 
Born in Paris in 1968 to an Italian mother and a Tunisian father, Slimane learned the art of photography before he even reached his teens and began making his own clothes at age 16.
After studying History of Art at the Ecole du Louvre, Slimane began working with fashion consultant Jean-Jacques Picart in 1992 on an exhibition celebrating the centenary of Louis Vuitton's iconic monogram. The project invited seven fashion designers - Azzedine Alaia, Helmut Lang, Sybilla, Manolo Blahnik, Isaac Mizrahi, Romeo Gigli and Vivienne Westwood - to reinterpret the monogram canvas in celebration of its longevity - and is widely considered to be Vuitton's first step towards fashion, before the appointment of ready-to-wear creative director Marc Jacobs in 1998.
After completing his work there in 1995, Slimane was named menswear director at Yves Saint Laurent in 1996, before being made the men's artistic director the following year. Yves Saint Laurent himself attended his debut menswear show and applauded enthusiastically from the front row.After presenting the Black Tie collection for autumn/winter 2000-2001 in January 2000 - in which he introduced his new skinny silhouette - Slimane left YSL; declined the creative directorship at Jil Sander following the founder's departure; and accepted a role at the helm of Christian Dior's men's line.
In November 2000, Karl Lagerfeld decided to lose weight in order that he could adopt Slimane's new skinny silhouette. "Until then, I had got along fine with my excess weight and I had no health problems, or - which would be worse - emotional problems, but I suddenly wanted to wear clothes designed by Hedi Slimane, who used to work for Saint Laurent and now creates the Dior Homme collections," Lagerfeld told the Telegraph. "But these fashions, modelled by very, very slim boys, required me to lose at least six of my 16 stone." The designer lost more than 90 lbs over the course of the year, and wore Slimane's designs faithfully the younger designer's time at Dior. 
In June 2001, Slimane headed up the launch of Dior Homme's first fragrance under his creative control - named Higher. He designed the packaging and worked with Richard Avedon on the advertising campaign to ensure all elements tallied with his new vision for the Dior man.

In 2002, Slimane became the first menswear designer to be named the CFDA International Designer of the year, presented by Slimane fan David Bowie.
Slimane soon became associated with musicians - including Mick Jagger, Jack White, The Libertines, Franz Ferdinand and The Kills - creating outfits for them to wear on stage. He also commissioned young bands, particularly new British groups, to create original soundtracks for the Dior Homme catwalk shows. Razorlight's In The Morning was composed especially for the autumn/winter 2005-06 show.During his time at Dior Homme, Slimane maintained his interest in photography and published  several books - including Berlin, featuring his photographs of the German club scene; Stage, about the rock revival; and London Birth of a Cult, about the then-unknown rock star Pete Doherty -  in the early Noughties. Pete Doherty and other British bands including The Paddingtons and The Others performed at Slimane's birthday party in July 2005.

Slimane's online photographic blog, The Diary, launched in 2006 - featuring his pictures of unknown cool kids as well as some of the music world's biggest stars.
In the summer of 2006, Slimane chose not renew his contract at Dior Homme after negotiations with the French house surrounding his eponymous label broke down. Dior proposed to fund Slimane's own collections but the designer was reportedly reluctant to lose control of his name. He was succeeded by Kris Van Assche in March 2007.
In March 2011, following John Galliano's dismissal from Christian Dior, Slimane was linked with the job of new Dior creative director. Later the same month, the Guardian implied in an interview with Slimane that he had ruled out returning to Dior, but his representatives told us at the time that that was not the case. "The article in the Guardian is obviously, and certainly deliberately, misleading," a spokeswoman said. "The interview was clearly done one day before the event [Galliano's arrest] in Paris and not after. It is therefore unrelated, and sadly presumptuous. The Guardian wanted obviously to associate and juxtapose the two, after the Dior events, by postponing the article. Hedi Slimane obviously never talked about - or even implied - Christian Dior, or any other luxury house in particular."
In 2011, Slimane published Anthology of a Decade; a book in four volumes about the past ten years in the four cities - Paris, Berlin, London, and LA - where Slimane he had spent most time.

In early 2012, Slimane was again linked with two of his former employers - Christian Dior  and Yves Saint Laurent - both of whom were seeking a new creative director following the departures of Galliano and (almost exactly a year later), Stefano Pilati, respectively.In March 2012, Slimane was officially appointed creative director at Yves Saint Laurent, changing the label's name in June 2012 to Saint Laurent Paris. 
A spokeswoman confirmed that the famous YSL logo, which appears on handbags, lipsticks and shoes, would remain unchanged, although there is no certainty that it will continue to be used as widely. Created by the graphic designer Cassandre to launch the fashion house in 1961, it has become as recognisable as Chanel's interlocked Cs or Louis Vuitton's LV.

Slimane's spokeswoman said he was drawing inspiration from 1966, when the ready-to-wear line was launched as Saint Laurent Rive Gauche. The name changed again after Saint Laurent retired. He produced the label's last haute couture collection in 2002, and died in 2008. This name change celebrates our legacy and heritage, while boldly marking our ambition for the future. It will allow us to return to the fundamentals of YSL and revive the spirit and the intentions that reigned over the creation of 'Saint Laurent Rive Gauche' in 1966: principles of youth, freedom, and modernity."The founder himself may have approved, as he enjoyed making radical changes: he became the first couturier to diversify into ready-to-wear, pioneered the trouser suit and introduced the first black models to Paris catwalks.

The makeover, to be presented with Slimane's first womenswear collection this autumn, will use similar fonts to the 1966 branding. And the full Yves Saint Laurent name will continue to be used for "institutional purposes".However, with the fashion house now part of the PPR conglomerate, its company name is far less prominent than the catwalk label.A photographer and designer, Slimane created menswear for YSL until 2000, before leaving for the same job at Dior.He exited Dior in 2007 to concentrate on photography, before returning to YSL to take over from Stefano Pilati, who succeeded Tom Ford as the brand's chief designer in 2004.
                                                         Saint Laurent's Collection

Hubert de Givenchy.

For 43 years,  the aristocratic French designer Count Hubert de Givenchy has been the perfect gentleman of couture. He has dressed a clientele from young debutante to dowager in styles elegant, pure, sculptural, refreshing, lady-like and addictive. His clients are women for whom elegance is everything. Givenchy is the last bastion of quality. Many Hollywood celebrities became his clients.Clean and minimalist sportswear with unusual detailing, jersey dresses with adaptable necklines, zippered jackets, lean pants, and for evening liquid gowns and light cashmere coats.He presented top Haute Couture collections which inspire designers and artists even today.
Count Hubert de Givenchy

                                                          Hubert Givenchy's Collection

Jean-Paul Gaultier

Jean-Paul Gaultier is a French fashion designer and past television presenter. Furthermore he is one of the most talked about and influential couturiers in the world. His designs are always unusual and controversial and he is the darling of the fashion press. Gaultier does not like primary colours, he prefers ivory and half tones. His images are tiny but sacrilegious, his cut a little better, his vision breathtaking. He is a designer who has made his reputation by attaching 12" conical breasts to Madonna and putting men in Lycra jumpsuits covered in small diamond shape mirrors. As his fantasies wing their way down the runway, you see Backless T-shirts, cutaway jackets with more space between than fabric, a riot of prints, insanely skirted mens pants and beautiful women. Very little is what one would expect. This sets him apart from other controversial designers.

 He starts with some classic point, something people are familiar with like a blazer, or a chemise, then he deforms it, knots it, stamps on it, but retains its classic shape. Gaultier's vision of 21st century clothing is spray-on disposable clothes, seamless and without openings. To take it off, one would pull firmly and throw away. According to Gaultier, our clothing has not changed drastically up till the 20th century, and styles and construction have not kept pace with advances in technology. He says changes are imminent. He will probably be the designer putting them into practice. He popularised the use of skirts, especially kilts on men’s wardrobe, and the release of designer collections. Gaultier caused shock by using unconventional models for his exhibitions, like old and fat women, pierced and heavy tattooed models, and by playing with traditional gender roles in the shows. This actions granted him both criticism and enormous popularity.A top Haute Couture designer aswell,he is memeber of Chamber Syndicate of Haute Couture.
Jean-Paul Gaultier

Gauliter's Collection

Emanuel Ungaro

Emanuel Ungaro has been one of the most innovative and colourful of today's Haute Couturiers.Emanuel Ungaro was born in 1933, of Italian parents. His father Cosimo Ungaro was a tailor who fled fascism to raise his family in France.  His debut was rapturously received, Twiggy and Penelope Tree were photographed by Avedon wearing Ungaro masks. Other popular outfits were leather jackets with hot pants, and pop socks, quilted leather jackets with jockey caps and thigh-high boots, and chain mail dresses with metallic bustiers. Ungaro was the son of a singing tailor, and music has been his inspiration. So his designs are created to an accompaniment of classical music in his salon. This has led to his genius for draping and flowing gowns. His Italian upbringing and love of the country side, has led  to his use of a wide range of colours. These are bright, floral, and scintillating. He uses a wide range of fabrics, prints and textures with an impeccable cutting technique. His designs and colour contrasts are also appreciated  As far as embellishments are concerned, he has in recent years, used more lace and intricate embroidery on his garments.
Emanuel Ungaro with a model

Ungaro's Collection 

Pierre Balmain

Balmain opened his own Haute Couture House in 1945.He gave a new and "independent look" to women's clothes . Later in 1960s he used contrasts of cut and style and fabrics for uncluttered designs and made his name as a sign of elegance.His Haute Couture collection was stunning and he was truly a pioneer of fashion.Pierre Balmain used fabrics scupturally for the creation of uncluttered designs accenting pure structure and contrasts of cut and style.Balmain's priority was elegance and sophistication. 

                                                                Balmain's Collection

Balmain with models

Christian Dior

Christian Dior was an influential French fashion designer. He was born on January 21, 1905 in Granville, France. Dior is known mainly for the 1947 "New Look" which employed narrow shoulders, constricted waist, emphasized bust, and long, wide skirt. His designs represented consistent classic elegance, stressing the feminine look.He gave the women's costumes a modern and elegant look and his cuts are clean and sophisticated.Legendry Dior is reffered as  "Master" of  fashion all around the world.He was also a top Haute Couture presenter and produced most luxurious and stunning dresses for women.
Christian Dior
Christian Dior with models in "New Look" dress
                                                                  Dior's Collection

Nicolas Ghesquière

 Ghesquière was born in Comines, Province, in 1971.At the age of 15, he interned at Agnès B in Paris during his school summer holidays. "I watched, I photocopied, I made the coffee," he told the New York Times.After leaving school, Ghesquière achieved his childhood dream: scoring an internship with Jean Paul Gaultier.

He joined Balenciaga in 1995 as a licensed product designer. "I was hired to do the licenced collection," he told WWD in 2005. "It was not the most exciting job but for me it was the most beautiful name in fashion. I didn't care at that time. I was thinking, 'It's OK. I will go and I will see what the potential is and see what is going on.' So it was not the most glamorous way to approach the brand. But it was interesting to work on this licence and to see what was left from Balenciaga." In 1997 he was appointed as the label's new creative director, replacing Josephus Thimister.

 His collections were in such high demand that the label's flagship store in Paris was unable to meet the demands of the crowds that gathered there daily.Ghesquière shuns personal fame, prefering his work to have the attention, and admits that he is his own harshest critic. "We've developed the [Balenciaga] brand," he told Interview magazine in January 2010. "I probably feel more solid because the brand is solid and I feel stronger than my years. His work amassed such a cult following that it inspired the pertinent (now-defunct) Tumblr, Balenciaga Did It First, and his exacting mix of sportswear, tailoring, and shapes cut with couture-like precision defined the fashion landscape for many seasons. The fashion world largely has Ghesquière to thank for popularizing everything from bra tops and sculpted sleeves (although Cristobal Balenciaga did do that first), to graphic slogan sweaters—like those from the Balenciaga Fall 2012 collection that still remain the most photographed street style look in recent memory.

 On October  2010, Ghesquière was crowned Fashion Group International's Superstar. "Nicolas Ghesquière defines the word 'superstar,'" FGI president Margaret Hayes told WWD. "Said to be one of the most intriguing and original designers of his generation, he has reinvented the House of Balenciaga and endowed its legacy with a cool, modern edge." On November 5, 2012 it was announced that Ghesquiére was to leave his role as creative director of Balenciaga after 15 years in the role. The designer was praised by François-Henri Pinault, chairman and CEO of PPR, who said:  "With an incomparable creative talent, Nicolas has brought to Balenciaga an artistic contribution essential to the unique influence of the house."Most recently he was featured in TIME's 100 Most Influential People of 2005. He was described as "fashion's most sought-after and influential figure" by American Vogue.
 Almost a year to the day later, on November 4 2013, it was announced that Ghesquiére was the new artistic director of Louis Vuitton - just weeks after Marc Jacobs had announced that he was retiring from the house after his swan song Parisian show during the spring/summer 2014 season.

                                               Ghesquiére's Collection for Balenciaga

Cristobal Balenciaga 

Cristobal Balenciaga Eisaguirre was born in 1895 in Guetaria, Spain. Balenciaga was revered by his fellow designers. They called him "The Master" because he created some of the most powerful styles of the twentieth century. In 1937 he opened his own Haute Couture house in Paris.His designs were admired fort he sophisticated, timeless style and cut. His work was both austere and extravagant, focusing on proportion and making certain that the cut of the cloth followed the lines of the body, always allowing freedom of movement. His daywear dresses, suits, and even hats were simple, practical and elegant. His evening designs allowed room for frivolity, using elaborate fabrics, heavy beading, feathers, and wide, puffy skirts. Many of his designs were inspired by Spanish regional dress and influenced by paintings of the old Spanish masters(Spanish Renaissance).

He was always fanatically precise about sleeves. He himself cut them mathematically and would never allow a less than perfect sleeve to leave his salon on anybody, even visitors. The perfect sleeve should be a living sculpture, beautiful to behold, a discreet play of subtle folds ensuring total comfort. Many people who came to his salon, had their coats snatched away by the Master for improvements to the sleeves. These included the wife of the Spanish Ambassador, Hubert de Givenchy and Bettina Ballard. Black was very evident, the black of Spain, so deep in tone that all other blacks looked grey beside it. One of the Pioneer of Haute Couture.He used all the browns, from chocolate to nutmeg, palest aquamarine, ice or hot pink, goldenrod, peacock blue, melon orange and teal green. He rarely used printed fabrics, preferring embroidery or sequins.
 Balenciaga had a reputation as a couturier of uncompromising standards and was referred to as "the master of us all" by Christian Dior.
Cristobal Balenciaga
                                                            Balenciaga's Collections


Nina Ricci

The house of Nina Ricci is a fashion house that was founded by Maria "Nina" Ricci and her son Robert in Paris in 1932. Nina Ricci designed gowns while Robert managed the business and finances.
Working directly with the fabric on a mannequin, Nina Ricci created elegant, sophisticated clothes in classic style. She was noted for her high standard of workmanship and became a popular designer for older society women. She was skilled at making the most of a print, cutting a plaid for an evening dress on the bias, echoing the X-cross in the skirt pattern in the surplice, crossed-over treatment of the bodice. One daring dress in 1937 had a halter neck open between the breasts from neck to waist. She also was a Haute Couture designer.Day and evening dresses alike drew attention to the figure, by being fitted to below the waist and featuring much shirring and drapery.
                                                                   Nina's Collection

Christian Lacroix

Lacroix designs expensive , glamourous and dramitic clothes.He is one of the top Haute Couture designer in Paris since 1988.A Renaissance inspired designer who really created master designs and ruled Paris for many years.Bernaurd Arnault of LVHM gave him keys for his own Haute Couture house in 1987 and since then he is making very glamourous and elegant clothes in fashion industry.Celebrated for his exuberant swathes of lace and embroidery, and patchworks of fabrics in vibrant colours, Lacroix hit the catwalks over 20 years ago with dramatic designs inspired by the costumes of his native Arles in the south of France, and the Camargue, with its gypsies and bullfighters.
His dresses are exhibited in art galleries around the world.In 2012 he started the LACROIX HOMME collection for men aswell.He is one of the greatest Haute Couture designer of all time.Along with Jean-Paul Gaultier he remains the top French designer of our time.

Christian Lacroix

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