Givenchy opened his couture house in 1952. La Maison Givenchy launched with a collection of separates including the iconic Bettina Blouse. The Bettina and the rest of the collection was a roaring success, earning Givenchy 7 million francs by the end of the day. Givenchy produced fine couture, but in 1954 became the first couturier to present a ready - to - wear line.
Givenchy went agains the “New Look” wave and released his “sack” dress in 1957. The sack dress was provocative, with a loose, circular silhouette that hid the torso, but with high hemlines that showed off the legs. Givenchy’s loose silhouette was a clear predecessor to the shift, trapeze, and babydoll dresses of the 1960s.
A Bite - Sized Look at Christian Dior’s Post-War New Look
After a years of wartime rationing, of scrimp and save, of fear and force, Christian Dior’s “New Look” brought fashion back to France. Dior launched his collection on February 12th, 1947, to uproarious applause. The “New Look” - dubbed so by Caramel Snow, editor-in-chief of Harper's Bazaar, when she declared "It's such a new look!" - was defined by cinched waists, full skirts, and an extravagant use of fabrics.
Dior continued to receive offers from fashion houses, however he wanted to build his own empire. The success of Balmain’s 1945 launch emboldened Dior, and in December of 1946, he quietly opened his fashion house. For two months Dior worked on his first collection. On February 12th he stunned the world with his “New Look.” The collection was a fresh return to opulence, with sculpted lines, full skirts, wasp waists, and yards and yards of silk.
Ricci worked intimately with each garment, pleating and pulling until she was satisfied. Although she sketched and drew patterns, she preferred to work directly on a mannequin. When she had finished perfecting her vision, she would send the prototype garment off to her seamstresses for the next step in production. Ricci was a designer who understood her clients needs and accommodated to their lifestyles without withholding style and substance.
Jeanne Lanvin began working in fashion at a very young age, first as an errand girl at a dressmakers, then later as an apprentice milliner. In 1885, at the age of 18, she gathered her savings and opened her first store in rue du Marche Saint Honore in 1885. This small millinery workshop would be Lanvin’s first stepping stone in the creation of a fashion empire that endures till this day.