Founder Of House Of Givenchy, Hubert De Givenchy Dies At Age 91

Danny Woods
March 13, 2018

The designer's father died when Hubert, born in Beauvais, north of Paris, was 2 years old. His company released a statement Morning confirming his death. At the end of World War Two, he convinced his family to let him pursue his love, fashion.

He was employed by the avant-garde designer Elsa Schiaparelli before leaving to found his own fashion house in 1952.

The black sheath dress Givenchy created for the opening scenes of Breakfast at Tiffany's became known as the most famous "little black dress" of all time.

But the client whose name would become nearly synonymous with the house was Hepburn, whom he met in 1953, when he dressed her for the romantic comedy "Sabrina".

Givenchy created wardrobes for Hepburn in films including Breakfast at Tiffany's and Funny Face.

But none were as close to him or the fashion house that bore his name as Hepburn, whose simple chic became a kind of shorthand for the label.

"It was an enormous help to know help to know that I looked the part". "Then the rest wasn't so tough anymore".

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Hepburn previously said of the designer, "Everyone wants to look attractive and at least I feel handsome when I'm in his clothes and they give me great confidence".

Givenchy's fame rised in the 1950's and for three decades he dressed some of the most attractive women in the world. "The American people felt emotion for Jackie, but they preferred to have an American couturier design her dresses when they came to France for a state visit".

By age 10, De Givenchy developed a fascination with fashion and design.

His first collection - which championed the concept of separates and featured flawlessly detailed embroidered pieces, chic silk prints and sophisticated ball gowns - immediately drew global recognition.

Aiming to reach a wider market, Givenchy launched a line of upscale ready-to-wear and accessories in the 1960s. In 1970, Givenchy took it further and designed furnishing fabrics and designed interiors for hotels.

Givenchy was forced to retire in October 1995 when his contract was not renewed by the giant LVMH group which had bought his house almost eight years before.

De Givenchy's hallmarks were simplicity and discretion, even during the 1970s and '80s, when overstatement and flamboyance were in vogue.

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