Haute Couture Fashion: Types, Characteristics and Brands

Haute Couture Fashion: Types, Characteristics and Brands

Shubham Anil Jain
Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Limited
Bangalore, India
Email: shubhamajain125@gmail.com


Haute couture is a French word for ‘high sewing’ or ‘high dressmaking’ which refers to the customization of exclusive fashion. Haute couture is an usual term for custom-fitted garment as produced initially in Paris but also in other fashion capitals such as New York, London, and Milan. The characteristic of it is that it’s not only made-to-measure for a specific customer, it is usually made from high-quality, expensive fabric and made with very keen attention to detail and finish, often using time-consuming hand oriented techniques. The terminology is sometimes used to refer exclusively to French fashion; more often, it mention to any unique stylish design made to order for wealthy and high-class clients.

Haute Couture Fashion
Fig: Haute couture fashion show

Types of Couture Fabrics:

1. Exclusive laces:
This category is simply consists with laces embroidered with floral appliqués, corded guipure and comfortable Chantilly laces that can also be infused with metal.

2. Feather fabrics:
Here, tulle, silk georgette and fluffed lace kind of fabrics can be a perfect choice for evening dresses with an art deco vibe.

3. Luxury cashmere:
Available in various designs and blends, cashmere fabrics emerge the splendor of “soft gold” for luxury clothing such as coats, suits, jackets, sweaters, cardigans and ponchos.

4. Couture beaded fabrics:
Charming with its marvelous glitter, beaded Chantilly and corded laces, various tulle and silk fabrics make such vibrant and beautiful garments as dress overlays, fascinating decollates and lots of other beautiful details.

5. Exclusive silk fabrics:
When it’s come to fabric associated with luxury and high social rank, silk has been always on top name. Not surprisingly, it is often embellished with Swarovski crystals, sequins, stripes, floral embroidery and laser-cut appliqués. These fabrics often highlights the effects reflecting the modern technological achievements in a textile industry, such as devore or lame effects, silvery plates and ribbon embroidery.

6. Couture cotton and linen fabrics:
Besides of their popularity on the huge market, these two are no less considered in the world of haute couture, represented with such fancy decor as satin stitch, eyelet or sequin embroidery, and hand-cut elements.

7. Couture bridal dress fabrics:
As like haute couture outfits, bridal dresses are worn only once. So, this gives a true artistic freedom in a fabric design, as the only criteria such a bold outfit should meet, is the design magnificence.

Famous Haute Couture Fashion Brands:

1. Louis Vuitton:
When we talk about Louis Vuitton it is by sure one of the most well-known haute couture brands in the world, because of its iconic monogram print adorning its bags and apparel. It was founded in France in 1854; this brand has become identical with high fashion and magnificent craftsmanship, consistently producing some of the most coveted pieces on the market.

2. Chanel:
Chanel is another topmost haute couture brand originated by the iconic Coco Chanel in 1909. Since its establishment, Chanel has been known for its enduring designs and comfortable materials, designing clothing, accessories, and fragrances that are desired by fashion lovers around the globe.

3. Dior:
It is basically a French brand with a huge history of serving to the elite fashion crowd. It was founded in 1946 by Christian Dior; this brand is known for its elegant designs that feature minute detailing and excellent craftsmanship. Today, Dior is one of the most sought-after brands in haute couture.

4. Gucci:
Thus brand is another top haute couture brand that is highly looking after by fashionistas around the world. Basically founded in 1921, Gucci is benchmark for its luxurious designs and ‘A’ grade quality materials. The brand has a huge variety of products, from clothing to shoes to accessories, all of which are widely coveted by those in the know.

5. Givenchy:
It is a French brand that has been in the haute couture culture for over past 60 years. It was founded by Hubert de Givenchy in 1952; this brand is known for its graceful and feminine designs. Pieces of this brand are often seen on some of the world’s most stylish women, further strengthening its place as a top haute couture brand.

6. Valentino:
It is an Italian brand designing beautiful haute couture garments from 1959. Basically created by Valentino Garavani, this brand is popular for its classic and timeless designs. While Valentino’s pieces can be sometimes more costlier, they are worth it for those who want to look their best.

Characteristics of Haute Couture:

1. Government Co-ordinated:
It is found that, the law protects haute couture, especially from copying. Only brands that fulfill the criteria given by the regulating bodies can be included in the catalogue and label their designs or products as haute couture. Whatever brand included on the list also gets reviewed and analyzed annually to ensure the designer still meets the requirements.

2. Atelier Oriented:
As today it is seen that, the world has become more modernized, haute couture pieces remain hand-sewn, so when one ask, “What is haute couture?” one of the answer is the house division. It means that, every haute couture house has different departments to ensure quality and precision. It is commonly seen that, brands usually segregate their houses into atelier tailleur, where they manufacture coats and suits for males, and atelier flou, where they create soft clothing for women, such as dresses and gowns.

3. Invite only Fashion Show:
Private clients are considered as guests to every haute couture show or collection launching. Always considering that, though, not every client gets an invite. Usually, it’s the biggest spenders and high-profile clients. Of course, some press people also get invited.

4. Arrange Only Visits:
Before going to Paris or any of the haute couture cities, one must book an appointment with the brand of their choice. It should also be taken care that you book months or even a year before needing a certain piece. The reason behind it is that the model garment designs are usually out of the country for presentation. That said, one can see haute couturiers that present their designs on a video to their continuous patrons or serious buyers.

It us seen that, because of their strict adherence to standards and regulations, Haute Couture brands will remain highly trendy after. Besides the popularity of these few registered houses, some old important members may return to the organization in the close by future. It is also chance for other members to rank in the fame chart soon due to their engagement with highly recognized individuals and the development of new, unique styles.


  1. https://www.bhdi.edu/industry/haute-couture/what-is-haute-couture/
  2. https://www.guionpartners.com/lifestyle/worlds-top-10-haute-couture-brands/
  3. https://440industries.com/haute-couture-brands-the-most-successful-brands/
  4. https://tissura.com/articles/couture-fabrics
  5. https://blog.treasurie.com/what-is-haute-couture/

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