Yesterday, the fashion world lost another historical creator of beautiful timeless pieces: the French designer Hubert de Givenchy, aged 91. The death of this “true gentleman”, as labeled by Claire Waight Keller, current artistic director at Givenchy, is certainly a great loss for the industry as well as the metaphoric end of an era.
With his iconic creations, as the little black dress worn by Audrey Hepburn in the famous movie “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”, he revolutionized the fashion panorama and inspired so many others after him to do just so.
As a matter of fact, he is the man responsible for the majority of chic designs that survived from the ‘50s and ‘60s up until current times. These are in fact the classic pieces that will likely never die out of style and that every woman should invest in. During her time as First Lady, Hubert de Givenchy was also the man behind Jackie Kennedy’s looks and, among the long list of other famous clients, there were also Jane Fonda and Princess Grace of Monaco. Basically, all the beautifully elegant women from those decades had a touch of Givenchy on them.
He used to say that “To dress a woman is to make her beautiful. […] In haute couture, we are cosmetic surgeons, erasing imperfections and refining the silhouette… for isn’t a couturier a magician of sorts, who creates illusion and perhaps beauty itself?”
Echoed by a young Hepburn who said: “His are the only clothes in which I am myself. He is far more than a couturier, he is a creator of personality.”
Hubert de Givenchy founded his homonymous brand in 1952 and the Maison later became part of the LVMH Group in 1988. He stepped down only in 1995 to retire properly and John Galliano took his place as creative director and main designer.
“Hubert de Givenchy was a symbol of Parisian elegance for more than half a century,” said the French label, “He was the first creator to launch a luxury ready-to-wear range. He revolutionized international fashion in creating timeless looks.”