What is couture?

Published: 23 December 2014 | by edited by Pippa Mann
What is couture?
According to Harriet Bowe of theindustrylondon.com, Couture is a legally protected and controlled label that can only be used by those that are certified by Paris’ official couture governing body, the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture.

Apparently without this accreditation a designer cannot be considered couture and there are only less than 20 real haute couturiers in the world.

theindustrylondon.com argue that the term 'couture gets banded about too easily. Many ready-to-wear designers often misappropriate the term in order to align themselves with the prestigious cache reserved exclusively for the very best; or because their collections are produced by hand and to an exceptionally high standard.'

Couturiers like Chanel and Dior have to be vetted by the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture.

To be branded couture a designer must meet the following requirements:


1. Design made-to-order garments for private clients that encompass one or more fittings.

2. Have an atelier in Paris that employs at least 15 people full-time.

3. Present a collection each season that is comprised of at least 35 looks for both day and night.

Nowadays, however, couture costs more than it makes through direct sales.

It's purpose is to add to the fun and aura of fashion and the ready to wear is then made available for the masses.

There was a revolt against high fashion in the 1960s and globalisation has diluted Paris' influence ever since.

- theindustrylondon.com
Tags: couture, fashion,

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