Fashion couture is a luxury. It is
a luxury that designer Christian Lacroix describes as a “laboratory of ideas.”
This unique idea of luxury and elaborate designs used to take front row for
successful couture designers. However, in these hard times of economic
recession and financial instability, top designers are struggling to find ways
to reinvent themselves and their ideas in a more affordable manner without
selling out to licenses.
fears of suffering the same fate as Lacroix since his couture house financially
collapsed in 2009, designers have found a way to appeal to the masses, thus
saving their own design houses by turning a profit. One such couturier is
French designer Jean Paul Gaultier who partnered with Target to bring a more
affordable version of his style to the public.
March 7, 2010, Gaultier, following in the footsteps of Alexander McQueen and
Anna Sui, became the third designer to complete a limited edition collection
for Target. With more than 30 years of experience under his belt and a style
made especially famous by Madonna during her world tours throughout the 1990s,
Gaultier succeeded in combining rock ‘n roll punk with 1940s Hollywood glamour
in an affordable manner.
collection with Target pays homage to the wide range of personalities that make
up the diverse styles of American women,” said Gaultier in a February 2010
press release for Target. “From ingénue to rock ‘n roll, this collection
celebrates women of all ages and a host of distinctive, iconic American
collection ranged in price from $17.99 to $199.99, the most expensive item in
the form of a brown and red, leather motorcycle jacket. Although not fairing as
well in stores, the collection sold out online making a large profit for both
Target and Gaultier. Tattoo print swimsuits and leggings sold especially well,
selling out online within hours of their release.
along with Target’s other collaborations, has not only allowed couture and
ready-to-wear designers to survive but also allowd the financially unstable
middle class an affordable chance at owning a luxury brand.
has also been working hard in partnership with Hermes. Earlier this year,
Newsweek reported a 20 percent profit jump in three months time for Hermes,
something not seen near enough in the world of high fashion.
in partnership with French interior design firm Roche Bobois, Gaultier will
reveal his new furniture collection Oct. 14. With this and hopefully many other
collaborations to come, Gaultier may have the business savvy to survive the
current economic crisis and keep his couture house alive.