Week with Haute Couture. Day 1. The Art of Haute Couture.

by Cashmere Wrap & Macadamia Nuts

To the concern of many fashion admirers, Haute Couture is a vanishing art. Currently only several fashion houses belong to the exclusive Haute Couture association called Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture. This French organization residing in Paris is the most prestigious and influential association in the fashion industry. Origins of the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture are dated back to 1868, when it was formally established by a great designer Charles F. Worth. Till this day the purpose of the association is to protect and promote the art of high fashion.

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In order to be able to join the Haute Couture association, an aspiring designer must follow and later on maintain certain standards:

  • Offer a selection of one of a kind hand made creations, that require individual fittings as well as consultations with the designer or a fashion house design team
  • Present two Haute Couture collections per year, honoring the requirement of at least 50 creations per collection (divided into a day and evening wear section)
  • Maintain a Paris located atelier as well as a technical team, employing all together no less than 35 full – time employees dedicated to the creation Haute Couture collections.

Designing each and every Haute Couture collection is a huge enterprise, not to mention a significant financial investment. Fabrics and decorative elements used for dressmaking, embroidery and ornaments can only be the finest and the most luxurious. All creations are hand made by the most capable and skilled craftsmen and craftswomen. Traditional manufacturing techniques are essential for the Haute Couture and deeply rooted into the high fashion.

Nowadays only the most prominent and profitable fashion houses can afford the honor of belonging to the Haute Couture association. Among others, the best known Haute Couture fashion houses are:

  • Christian Dior
  • Chanel
  • Valentino
  • Jean Paul Gaultier
  • Versace Atelier
  • Elie Saab
  • Giambattista Valli
  • Armani Prive.

The Haute Couture designs market recruits its customers from the world’s elite, since Couture creations are incredibly pricey and not easily accessible. In order to purchase Haute Couture one has to posses resources and relevant connections, because Couture is a closed society.

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For the general audience, Haute Couture designs are available only through fashion media, but here no limitations are applicable. With just one click one can travel into the world of the high fashion, being able to observe, admire and look for some inspiration. The beauty of Haute Couture translates into many languages and this week is dedicated to it.

(Photo: http://www.vanityfair.com)

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