If you are a fashion inclined individual at some point, you probably have heard of flamboyant pieces of clothing called “couture” The uber priced items that are painstakingly made in the form of “high sewing” (Haute Couture)

Haute couture

It can be traced back to the court of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette’s reign, but it wasn’t formalized in France until English born designer Charles Worth burst onto the scene and opened his Paris atelier in 1858.

It was Worth who founded the Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne to regulate the craft of haute couture.

During World War II, there was an attempt to bring haute couture to Berlin, to which the President of the Chambre Syndicale at the time, Lucien Lelong, proclaimed, “It is in Paris or nowhere.”

Years after, the couture collections are revealed twice a year — Ss in January and FW in July. Contrary to many beliefs, couture shows include both daywear and evening wear.

The Cost

Depending on the level of embellishment a day wear couture piece usually starts at around $20,000. However, it varies on the brand [Chanel Haute Couture typically cost between $40,000-80,000], while bridal can easily cost $100,000-150,00, depending on the level of embellishments.

As Paris “couture week” came to a close in January 2020, we look at some of the most notable creations by designers.

Jean Paul Gaultier, SS20 Paris Fashion Couture

Jean-Paul Gaultier

Biding farewell to 50 years of Fashion and his last couture show. Gaultier showcased breathtaking 200-plus looks staged in Paris’s storied Théâtre du Châtelet. Prominently the famed blue-and-white-striped matelot sweater transformed on Gigi Hadid into a couture masterwork of fan-pleated organza, worn with matelot pants worked in a finely tucked jersey like one of Madame Grès’s fabled goddess gowns.

Valentino SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureValentino

This season’s collections were highlighted with black and white Pieces, yet at Valentino, the looks were lavished with colors and exotic patterns.

Julie De Libran SS20 Paris Fashion Couture

Julie de Libran

Fairly new kid on the block of couture, designed by namesake designer.

Maison Margiela by John Galliano SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureMaison Margiela By John Galliano

Layers, Layers, Layers. It’s been a while since we have seen a gown by the John Galliano, master of couture, and it feels heavenly.

Schiraparelli by Daniel Roseberry SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureGivenchy

Exuberant silhouettes with detailed three-dimensional embroideries.

Armani Prive SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureArmani Prive

Loved and admired by his clients. Armani showed what he knows best; unmatched coordinates and blurring outlines with layers of transparency.

Ronald Van der Kemp SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureRonald Van der Kemp

Guilt-Free Fur Trash Coats and sexy and Exhilarating pieces.

Giambattista Valli SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureGiambattista Valli

Color meets artisan.

Chanel SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureChanel

Schoolgirl meets a princess.

Christian Dior SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureChristian Dior

Etheral draping and stunning fabric manipulation.

Iris Van Herpen SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureIris Van Herpen

Evoking just about any pattern in nature: plant membranes, feathers, fossils, fins, bubbles, sound waves with laser-cut details.

Zuhair Murad SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureZuhair Murad

Cruising downtime Nile river, riffing on the ancient tropes of Egypt—while invoking gods. Know for his embroidery techniques; the highlights were high indeed.

Guo Pei SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureGuo Pei

Symbology in clothing, sumptuously, opulent, and theatrical.

Ralph & Russo SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureRalph & Russo

Seafoam green and a dégradé of pastel colors.

Schiraparelli by Daniel Roseberry SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureSchiaparelli by Daniel Roseberry

A legendary brand, now designed by an American with a glorious Imagination.  Colorful and rich in textures.

Alexis Mabille SS20 Paris Fashion CoutureAlexis Mabille

Sensual elegance.