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What is Haute Couture

Haute Couture Clothes
Haute couture refers to the designing, creating, and selling exclusive custom-made, high fashion women's clothes. The term "haute couture" comes from the French language. Haute means "high" or "elegant", Couture means "sewing" or "dressmaking". A business must be a member of the Syndical Chamber for Haute Couture in Paris, which is regulated by the French Department of Industry, in order to be called a haute couture house. To become a member a company must employ at least 15 people and present their collections twice a year. Each presentation must include at least 35 separate outfits for day and evening wear. Each year, in January and July, Paris hosts about 30 shows during the haute couture and 30 men’s wear fashion shows and again in March and October over a hundred women’s ready-to-wear fashion shows. Since 1982, the Federation has been using prestigious places located in the very heart of Paris to present the shows: the Cour Carrée and Cour Napoléon in the Louvre, then the Jardin des Tuileries and later the restored Cour Carrée. In early 2007, there are ten official haute couture member houses. Some of the most famous are Coco Chanel, Christian Dior, and Givenchy. Haute couture clothing usually takes from 100 to 400 hours to make one dress, costing from $26,000 to over $100,000. A tailored suit starts at $16,000, an evening gown at $60,000. Today only 2,000 women in the world buy couture clothes; 60% are American. Only 200 are regular customers. Often, designers will loan clothes to movie stars or other public figures for publicity. Originally referred to French fashion and in France, now the term Haute Couture is also used loosely to describe all high-fashion custom-fitted clothing.

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the top and high point of fashion

haute couture meaning and definition: the business of making, expensive clothes of original design and high quality.

Haute couture is one of the most misused terms in fashion. Some of the uninitiated toss it around relentlessly in an ungainly belief that peppering your language with exotic French expressions will make you sound smarter while others use it because haute couture collections are way fancier than ready to wear, so everything that's at least a bit fancy in the eye of the beholder automatically becomes couture: The main misconception people have about the term haute couture is that it applies to all handmade and/or made to order garments, whether manufactured by seamstresses at Dior or aspiring fashion design students. This is not entirely incorrect, but it is a very loose interpretation of the term. Some fashion houses add to the confusion by falsely describing their special collections as haute couture; you would think they should be the first ones making sure the term is used properly, but fashion industry probably fuels the mystery behind these two words on purpose as to create more buzz.

My boyfriend bought me a Hysteric Glamour shirt, They're hard to find in the States, got me feeling couture. Gwen Stefani, Harajuku Girls

To earn the right to call itself a couture house and to use the term haute couture in its advertising and any other way, a fashion house must follow these rules:
Design made to order for private clients, with one or more fittings.
Have a workshop (atelier) in Paris that employs at least fifteen people full-time.
Each season (example: twice a year) present a collection to the Paris press, comprising at least thirty-five runs/exits with outfits for both daytime wear and evening wear.

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