Couture’s new clientele: In recent years haute couture has witnessed a surge in clients, many of them young, in their 20’s and 30’s. For some it is their first experience wearing couture, while others have acquired a taste for it through their mother’s and friends who were already established customers. Most new customers will gain entrance into a couture house through an introduction by an already established client.
Top left clockwise: Sheetal Mafatlal represents a new Indian couture clientele and was instrumental in opening the first Valentino boutique in India; Valentino with the young couture client Eugenia Niarchos; In a rare moment, young Arab clients from the Gulf caught on film after the Gaultier Paris show, with Catherine Deneuve being interviewed in the foreground; New York client Helen Lee Schifter in Dior haute couture; Princess Lalla Soukaïna of Morroco represents a young Middle Eastern couture customer; Princess Rosario of Bulgaria is a regular customer at Valentino; Princess Charlotte, Princess Caroline of Monaco’s daughter, has acquired her mother’s taste for Chanel haute couture; Indian clients seated at a Dior couture show; Anh Duong and Rena Sindi were both married in couture wedding gowns by Christian Lacroix, Sindi’s mother is Nada Kirdar who is a prominent couture customer; Fabiola Beracasa is no stranger to the world haute couture with an illustrious pedigree to match. Her mother Veronica Hearst was born in Monte Carlo to Princess Fatemah Khanoum and the Dutch aristocrat Wilhelmus de Gruyter and was first fitted for Balenciaga couture at the age of 16. As a child Fabiola attended many of her mother’s fittings at Valentino and Dior and reputedly has 14 closets of couture and countless more through her mother. Seen here wearing a Givenchy couture ball gown from Spring 2007; When the American heiress Marie-Chantal Miller married Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece in London in 1995, not only did she wear a couture gown by Valentino, made with ten types of lace, but dozens in the wedding party wore Valentino as well. Today she is still a loyal customer at the House, shown here wearing a Balmain couture gown from Fall 2001.
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