Paris Couture Week Makes Major Changes


For the past two years, the demand for haute couture has been slumping. But in a sign of renewed confidence, officials at the Chambre Syndicale De La Haute Couture have decided to lengthen this year’s Couture Week by a day. The Chambre Syndicale is an agency of the French government whose sole purpose is to regulate the couture market. Designers who are wishing to show as part of the schedule in Paris must be accredited by the agency and possess an on-site atelier and team of at least twenty seamstresses. The minimum number of looks in a couture collection is 25.

In 1945, when the regulations became law, there were over 100 haute couture houses. This coming Couture Week, only 36 brands will show collections. Though the number of houses making couture collections has decreased, those remaining have reported record sales in the first half of this year. Representatives for Chanel and Jean Paul Gaultier told WWD that they had seen a double digit jump in profits so far.

This year’s proceedings kick off on July 2nd. The show schedule touts some interesting guest members as well as all the expected big name couture players like Schiaparelli, Christian Dior, and Chanel. For the first time, Proenza Schouler, Rodarte, Azzaro, A.F. Vandevorst, and Ronald van der Kemp will reveal couture collections. Azzedine Alaïa also returns to the show schedule for the first time in six years.

Elsewhere in the city, Chloé will reveal its new Maison. The house is opening the new exhibition space and is slated to host a glamorous opening gala on the evening of July 2nd. Iris Van Herpen and Stéphanie Rolland will also throw soirées throughout the week; each mark a decade designing haute couture. At Les Arts Décoratifs, Dior will open the doors to a massive retrospective exhibition to celebrating its 70th anniversary. Here’s to the triumphant return of couture.


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