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A Lesson: The Three Types of Fashion

Continuing our Lesson series, we are going to chat about the three types of fashion today. Couture may be the most infamous, but Mass Market Fashion is certainly the most common.

So, what exactly does this have to do with personal styling and image consulting? Well, its technical- I get that- and it is also a little boring, but just like learning math in high school, it builds the foundation for a solid sense of style.

Mass Market Fashion

The first sector of design involves the most straightforward and accessible form of clothing, which is the mass market.

Clothing that is designed for this area is ready to wear and available in mass quantities at standard measurements. Since this is the most affordable fashion production, the most inexpensive fabrics and materials are used to create designs.

Examples: GAP, Nordstrom, or Old Navy.

Ready to Wear Fashion

If you want to create clothes that are a little bit more high-end and exclusive, ready-to-wear garments are a great fashion type. These garments are also referred to as prêt-a-porter, and there are a couple of benefits to the designer: they are sold in smaller amounts and bear the designer’s name on the label, but they are often more expensive.

The term ready-to-wear is also often referred to as “off the rack,” and many haute couture designers will sell select pieces in both sectors.

Haute Couture Fashion

Charles Frederick Worth was the first fashion designer. who established the first haute couture house in Paris in 1858, which is a fashion style used by designers like Versace, Yves Saint Laurent, and Christian Dior.

As a designer, haute couture is considered the pinnacle of fashion. Designers who specialize in this sector work on crafting original creations that cost thousands of dollars. Most of the time, the designer will work directly with clients and arrange custom fittings and alterations.

The following guidelines are set forth by The Fédération Françoise de la Couture and The French Ministry of Industry, and they must be followed by designers who wish to carry the haute couture label.

  • Create custom made to fit clothing for private clients and provide personal fittings
  • They must own an atelier in Paris with at least fifteen full-time employees
  • They also must own a workshop in Paris that employs no less than twenty staff
  • The fashion house must present a collection of both daytime and evening wear to the Paris press twice a year for review

That’s it! Those are the three types of fashion- pretty simple, yeah? Unless you desire to be a Couture designer, of course.

If you liked this, you may also like: A Lesson: Learning the Five Types of Fabric