Welcome to Delightful
Welcome to my fashion & lifestyle blog. This is an accumulation of all of my delightful finds, as well as a bit about me! Hopefully you will pop back to get your daily dose of delightfulness.
Afternoon all. Did you see my recent Designer Love – Chanel and Designer Love – Dior posts on the blog recently? As you may know, I am going to be dedicating a series of blog posts to my favourite classic designers and this third post of the series is for Givenchy.
Born in 1927, Count Hubert de Givenchy, is a French Aristocrat and fashion designer who opened and ran the House of Givenchy in 1952 until he retired in 1995. Givenchy is most famous for creating practically all of Audrey Hepburn’s wardrobe as well as dressing Jackie Kennedy on a regular basis.
The Givenchy family was ennobled in 1713, at which time the head of the family became marquis of Givenchy. Givenchy’s father died of influenza in 1930 after which time he and his elder brother were raised by their mother and grandmother. The older brother, Jean Claude de Givenchy inherited the family’s marquessate and eventually became the president of Parfums Givenchy.
Impressed by the 1937 World’s Fair in Paris, Givenchy wanted to go into fashion and studied at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. His first designs were for Jacques Fath in 1945, and he later designed for Robert Piguet and Lucien Lelong (1946) — working alongside Christian Dior. From 1947 to 1951 he worked for the avantgarde designer Elsa Schiaparelli.
Givenchy dress 1956 via Flickr
In 1952, The House of Givenchy opened and he named his first collection Bettina Graziani - Paris’s top model at the time. His style was marked by innovativeness, contrary to the more conservative designs by Dior. At 25, he was the youngest designer of the progressive Paris fashion scene and his first collections were characterized by the use of rather cheap fabrics for financial reasons, but they always piqued curiosity through their design.
The most famous ambassador of the Givenchy brand was Audrey Hepburn who wore Givenchy in films such as Sabrina, How to Steal a Million and Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Audrey – “Balenciaga once said the secret of elegance is elimination. I believe that. That’s why I love Hubert Givenchy… They’re clothes without ornament, with everything stripped away.”
The House of Givenchy was split in 1981, with the perfume line going to Veuve Clicquot, while the fashion branch went to LVMH (Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton), and now LVMH owns both Veuve Clicquot and Parfums Givenchy. LVMH is a French multinational apparels and accessories company who own various luxury brands including Givenchy and Christian Dior.
After Givenchy’s retirement in 1995 John Galliano took over, but was quickly promoted to Christian Dior less than two years later, which led to the hiring of Alexander McQueen. In 2001, designer Julien Macdonald was appointed Artistic Director for the women’s lines. The reins were ultimately passed on to Riccardo Tisci in 2005 when he was named chief designer of womenswear. Reviews on Tisci are mixed due to his apparent fascination with gothic touches and space-age minimalism, but attention is being drawn to the brand and critics still believe there is potential to revitalize the brand.
What do you think – are you a fan of Givenchy? Did you know all of this about him? I know I didn’t – especially about him being a Count. What about the photos – which is your favourite? I love the ones of him with Audrey Hepburn.
Have a good afternoon and I shall be back soon xx
Historical information via Wikipedia.