What is Haute Couture? And what is its importance in the Fashion World? Most of us ask ourselves those questions and wonder why Haute Couture exists; well this post is a chance for those of you that want to satisfy their curiosity. As a Fashion Entrepreneur and Blogger, I was interviewed by Instituto Marangoni graduate Haneen Maalouf, who has completed her Masters degree in Luxury Brand Management in London.
Haneen is conducting primary research to study Fashion Bloggers/Fashion Entrepreneurs perspective regarding Haute Couture being included in luxury brand’s online boutique.
Read along to discover more about Haute Couture
Haven Malouf: I am a Master student in Istituto Marangoni (London), and I am conducting primary research to study fashion bloggers/fashion entrepreneurs perspective regarding haute couture being included in luxury brand’s online boutique. Please answer the following questions within short answers.
Haneen Malouf: How important is haute couture for the fashion world? Why?
Dolly Eter: Fashion started with Charles Frederick Worth (a.k.a the Father of Haute Couture), and ever since, fashion has evolved like technology because of Haute Couture. Therefore, Couture is very important to the fashion world because it reflects the creativity and expressions of every fashion designer. Many people would argue that there is no point in Haute Couture since most people do not purchase designer clothes, however, in the past few years, Couture has never been more successful and sales percentages, of 3/4th of the big brands, has increased wildly in this age of the global super-rich. Not to mention, without Haute Couture, there would be less glitz and excitement for celebrities, their fans, models, paparazzi…and everyone would be wearing standard and conventional items and that would hurt the bottom line of the fashion industry and the stardom image of celebrities and high society.
Haneen Malouf: Do you think the concept of haute couture changed with time?
Dolly Eter: Haute couture has moved away from handcrafted, made-to-fit items intended for specific wealthy clients to now revolve around the runway. Being seen in today’s world is one of the most valuable things a designer brand can do and many designers have dropped “pret-a-porter” and are focusing on Couture, clothes that typically are not sold and are not meant to be worn, and fragrance, which is perhaps the top revenue-driver for fashion houses, is an interesting positioning strategy. These designers are using couture to place themselves in the highest echelons of luxury fashion. They are moving away from producing actual fashion towards something that more resembles art.
H.M: What do you think of the engagement of the Internet with luxury brands?
D.E: The Internet is a massive touch point for fashion items and luxury brands. Since we live in a world where everyone is connected and indulging their visual hunger, as well as their exhibitionist side, through social media platforms. We are curious creatures and have an endless love for art, beauty and luxury, there’s no doubt that the internet not only teaches us about many designers and many styles and products, but it also gets a lot of people inspired to seek those products.
H.M: How do you think that you as a blogger/fashion entrepreneur can influence the taste of the current generation and their fashion decisions?
D.E: Honestly, my aim is not only to help those who do not know much about fashion and beauty, but also to learn and get more engaged with the fashion world myself. So in regards of influencing our generation, I wouldn’t really describe it as influencing because I believe each person has something unique in them with a different taste and perspective to fashion. Having many goals in mind, one of which is to become an image consultant, I would like to help those who are interested in exploring their taste and finding their own style. For me, it is never about what is trendy; it is about what suits one most.
H.M: Do you believe that haute couture should be sold online through the online boutique?
D.E: No it shouldn’t for two reasons. Haute Couture has always been a social and “select” public endeavor, easy public access and Haute Couture do not mix. In addition, for someone to make sure they are buying a great piece of art that would fit them perfectly, they would have to do so by following the traditional process of buying an Haute Couture.
H.M: What do you think, as a fashion blogger and fashion entrepreneur might be the positives and negatives of selling haute couture on the brand’s online boutique?
D.E: As I mentioned earlier, I wouldn’t really see positive aspects in selling Haute Couture online. I am however with the idea of displaying the great items online to drive people to the stores and consolidate the brand’s identity. Negatives:
- Lets suppose I bought an item online, first of all pictures don’t really reflect the beauty of the detail in an item. In addition, if I got my item online, and I was disappointed for ANY reason (whether the size, the texture etc…) it wouldn’t be a good feedback for the brands name since bad reputation would build up based on word-of-mouth.
- Another negative aspect would be that Haute Couture would be easily obtained (and I am speaking for those who can afford it). When something is easy to get, it becomes a normal thing and loses its spark. One of the reasons for the success of the Haute Couture world today is that it builds anticipation and excitement to actually get into the designers store where you would see all those beautiful details clearly and you can actually touch the fabrics etc.. And be able to try them out to know which item looks best on you. This way, the brand can guarantee 99% of the customer’s gratitude for the inspiration and craftsmanship of the designer.
Thank you for your time.
I hope this was helpful for those of you who aren’t familiar with the Haute Couture World. For any additional questions, I am ready to answer you whenever and wherever you catch me =)
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My next post will be a continuation of my previous article STYLE NOT BRAND, so stay tuned !