Haute Couture is a French word or phrase that means high or elegant sewing. This has come to mean high sewing in the modern times. Haute Couture designer dresses are tailored specifically for the measurements of the person who will wear the dress. The Haute Couture garment is exquisite and exclusive in style and taste and very expensive. Only the very rich can afford to have Haute Couture dresses made for them because of prohibitive prices. This kind of price does buy you an one of a kind dress that others are not able to duplicate. The main reason for the price of a Haute Couture dress is the extreme level of quality and that one of a kind style and fit. The look and feel of the dress is always more important for the designers rather than the money spent or time taken.
The Couturier or the designer takes special care of the wearer’s choice and lifestyle. The design is finalized in close consultation with the client. The choice of fabric is one of the biggest concerns. Before the final dress is stitched, a sample garment, called a toile, using cheap fabric is made for fine fitting. Until the toile is signed off on, the dress won’t be finished. The garment is mostly hand stitched and embroideries and embellishments made by hand. Since so much effort is put into one single piece of garment, it is so expensive. Moreover, the materials used, be it the fabric, the thread used for embroidery, the buttons, stones, etc. are expensive and top-of-the line.
The most important step in getting a Haute Couture dress is choosing the right designer or design house. Some of the famous design houses include Chanel, Christian Dior, Jean Paul Gautier, Giorgio Armani, Valentino, Stephane Rolland, etc. You should ideally go through their catalogue and take a look at the type of designs, fabrics and cuts they have used in the past. Peruse your choices a bit and decide which designers and designs stir your soul. This will make it easier for you to decide on one of them. Once that is one, your half of the work is done. Now the onus is on the designer to design the perfect dress for you as per your requirements.
Making a final determination is what comes next so that the actual work can begin. Be sure to talk about where the dress will be worn with your chosen designer. This will allow the designer to choice the most appropriate materials to work with. After all there are so many dress options available to women, be it the evening gown, ball gown, a frock, a dress or a simple suit. You’ll also be helping decide what sort of cut and how the dress hangs on you by discussing this with your designer. After you’ve narrowed this down, you’ll need to select a type of fabric. Haute Couture designer dresses typically employ very high end (and expensive) materials. The material could be anything like silk, linen, cotton, cashmere, satin, suede, leather, furs, etc. Once that is done, a sample garment called the toile is stitched. The toile is a replica of the actual garment in terms of fitting, cut, line and length. It’s much cheaper to use a toile than to use the actual fabric for the finished product. A few more adjustments will be made to the toile before work begins on the actual dress.
The final Haute Couture garment is almost exclusively hand stitched. The embroidery is done with real silk, gold or silver threads by hand. The embellishments, whatever their number, are stitched to the dress by hand. This also adds to the price tag of your designer dress. The number of Haute Couture dresses that any design house sells is very less because number of people who can afford them is few. But still the design houses continue with them because it is in their tradition, satisfies the creative urges of the couturiers and meets dreams of a few thousands of women the world over. It doesn’t hurt either that the women who purchase these kinds of dresses serve as excellent advertisement for the designers and design houses in general.
The Haute Couture dresses are trendsetter in the field of fashion. Each garment that is donned sparks off a series of clothing range inspired by it. New collections of Pret A Porter dresses can be modeled after the much more expensive Haute Couture version. The Pret A Porter collection is the more affordable range of dresses by designers where uniqueness of the dress in not necessary. The Haute Couture market is tiny in comparison. It’s estimated that only around 5000 women in the entire world are able to afford a Haute Couture dress. It only makes sense to also cater to the mainstream market with affordable versions of Haute Couture. However, there is no real comparison to an actual Haute Couture designer dress. So if you can afford it, nothing like it to pamper yourself. The couturiers also design accessories to go with the dress. These accessories can include jewellery, bags, watches, belts, shoes, etc. So if you want the complete look for the evening, go for the accessories as well. Of course, you can always get a dress by one designer and accessories by a different one. The idea is to look and feel elegant and unique. It’s your choice how you reach that goal.
Given that it’s within your means, go ahead and get the Haute Couture dress with your chosen accessories. Remember to include perfume as part of your ensemble!! When your big event happens, you’ll be the belle of the ball in designer dresses that will be the envy of the gathering.