Hauteur couture is a made to order specific clothing garment, usually of the best quality fabrics and extreme attention to detail. In French the term "Hauteur Couture" is now protected by law and defined the "Chambre de commerce et d'industrie de Paris based in Paris, France. Their rules state that only "those companies mentioned on the list drawn up each year by a commission domiciled at the Ministry for Industry are entitled to avail themselves" of the label haute couture. The criteria for haute couture were established in 1945 and updated in 1992.
To earn the right to call itself a couture house and to use the term hauteur couture in its advertising and any other way, members of the Chambre syndicale de la haute couture must follow these rules:
- Design made-to-order for private clients, with one or more fittings.
- Have a workshop (atelier) in Paris that employs at least fifteen people full-time.
- Each season (i.e., twice a year), present a collection to the Paris press, comprising at least thirty-five runs/exits with outfits for both daytime wear and evening wear.
Dresses designed by Charles F Worth.
CHARLES FREDERICK WORTH, Is considered the fore fathers of Hauteur Couture as we know it today. Born in England and working in France, he revolutionised the high fashion culture, with showing a portfolio of his designs on live models.
He began his carer as a draper in London then moving to Paris and continuing on there. HE was to marry one of the young models "Marie Vernet", she would model simple shawls and bonnets and eventually some simple dresses designed and made by Charles, which prospective customers enquired about and requested copies.
Still working at the drapery and now a junior partner in the firm, he urged to expand into dressmaking. Charles decided to branch out and found a Swedish man to help him bankroll his new venture and in 1858 opened "Worth and Bobergh".
Clothing designed by Charles f Worth.