There’s something about luxury French brands that just screams elegance. From the high-end fashion houses such as Christian Dior and Yves Saint Laurent to the chic accessories designers like Hermès, French luxury brands have a certain je ne sais quoi that is simply irresistible. If you’re looking for the best of the best, look no further than these luxurious French brands!
Luxury French Brands That You Should Know
Upscale French brands are known for their luxurious designs and materials. These brands use the finest fabrics and craftsmanship to create their products.
They are also known for their high prices. This is because luxury brands put a lot of effort and investment into their designs and manufacturing process.
Luxury French brands often have a waitlist for their products, which can make them even more desirable. They usually have a long history and are only available in the most exclusive boutiques and department stores.
One of the most iconic luxury French brands, Dior is known for its haute couture fashion designs and luxury perfume. Founded in 1946 by designer Christian Dior, the brand has since been helmed by a number of renowned fashion designers including Yves Saint Laurent, John Galliano, Raf Simons and currently Maria Grazia Chiuri.
From 1947 and throughout the 1950s, Christian Dior took the fashion world by storm with the New Look. This style is characterized by a narrow waist and flared skirt. At the time this design was controversial, due to the amount of fabric used to make the skirts.
Today, the iconic French brand is a favorite among celebrities and has been worn by some of the most famous names in the world. Shop at House of Dior by visiting the flagship store on Avenue Montaigne in Paris, or online at ChristianDior.com.
Christian Dior famous designs:
- The New Look
- Tulip Dress
- Bar Jacket
Established in 1854, Louis Vuitton Malletier is a world-renowned fashion house that is synonymous with high quality and luxury. From its iconic monogrammed handbags to its chic clothing and handmade luxury trunks, Louis Vuitton has something for everyone who wants to feel like a VIP.
The brand’s style is often imitated, so if you’re looking to buy vintage items it’s important to purchase from an approved reseller or to learn how to identify genuine Louis Vuitton goods.
Consistently named as the world’s most valuable luxury brand, Louis Vuitton are part of LVMH Moët Hennessy and owned by Bernard Arnault. Celebrities such as Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Lopez and Sean Connery have appeared in Louis Vuitton advertising campaigns.
Louis Vuitton famous designs:
- Steamer Trunk
- Neverfull Bag
- Speedy Bag
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This iconic luxury French fashion house was founded in 1961 by designer Yves Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Bergé. YSL, now known as Saint Laurent, is famous for its modern yet timeless designs, as well as its luxury handbags and shoes.
Creative directors who have worked for the brand include Hedi Slimane, Stefano Pilati and currently Anthony Vaccarello. Yves Saint Laurent was particularly well known for his tuxedo designs for men and women.
He also helped to democratize luxury fashion by introducing ready-to-wear designs. And who could forget the padded shoulders of the 80s that Yves introduced!
Yves Saint Laurent famous designs:
- Le Smoking tuxedo suit
- Safari jacket
- Mondrian dress
One of the most expensive clothing brands in the world, Chanel epitomizes elegance and class. Founded in 1910 by Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel, the brand has been led by a number of renowned designers including Karl Lagerfeld and Virginie Viard.
Chanel is known for its luxurious fashion designs, iconic handbags, cosmetics and perfume. Indeed, Chanel No. 5 perfume was a favorite of movie actress Marilyn Monroe, who confessed to wearing only a few drops of it to bed.
Chanel’s little black dress and pearl necklace with a double-C are two other iconic creations that have stood the test of time. Shoppers can head to the Chanel flagship store at rue Cambon in Paris, or shop online at Chanel.com.
Chanel famous designs:
- Tweed jackets
- Yachting pants
- 2.55 Handbag
A luxury French brand founded in 1837 by Thierry Hermès, it originally designed award-winning bridles and harnesses for horse carriages. When Thierry’s son Charles-Émile took over, he opened a boutique at 24 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, where the brand is still based today.
In 1918, the brand designed the first leather golf jacket with a zipper for Edward, Prince of Wales. Hermès introduced the Kelly Bag, named after Grace Kelly in 1935, followed by their Hermès silk scarves (or carrés) in 1937.
These days, Hermès is known for its high-quality leather goods, handbags, silk goods and watches. Creative directors who have worked for the brand include Christophe Lemaire and presently Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski.
Hermès famous designs:
- Birkin Bag
- Constance Belt
- Oran Sandal
This high-end fashion house has been dressing some of the most famous women in the world for over 75 years, and shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. Celine was founded in 1945 by designer Céline Vipiana, starting as a handmade children’s shoe shop.
The brand’s classic pieces are timeless and elegant, yet still manage to feel modern. Celebrities like Natalie Portman, Emma Stone, and Naomi Watts are all fans of Celine, and have been spotted wearing the brand on numerous occasions.
Hedi Slimane is the creative and artistic director of Celine. He has successfully launched Celine men’s fashion, couture and fragrance lines.
Celine famous designs:
- American Sulky Bag
- Trench coats
- Scarf-print shirt by Phoebe Philo
A luxury French fashion house founded in 1889 by Jeanne Lanvin, the brand is known for its feminine designs and luxury handbags. Jeanne Lanvin started out as a milliner’s assistant, before launching her own clothing line.
Designing outfits for her beloved daughter Marguerite, Lanvin soon branched out into matching clothes for mothers and children. She created clothing for many different body types and expanded her range to include menswear, lingerie, hats, sportswear, wedding gowns, home goods and perfume.
Lanvin’s current creative director is Bruno Sialelli.
Lanvin famous designs:
- Loose flapper dress
- Matching mother and daughter outfits
- Arpège perfume
Jean Paul Gaultier
A luxury French fashion house founded in 1982 by designer Jean Paul Gaultier, the brand is famous for its avant-garde designs and fragrances. Although Gaultier announced his retirement in 2020, the brand name will carry on with a series of guest creatives.
Gaultier has no formal fashion training, however his talent impressed designers such as Pierre Cardin and Jean Patou whom he worked for. As well as coming up with a skirt for men (which was actually a kilt), he famously designed stage costumes for Madonna.
The innovative designer has often used unconventional models and popularized the grey haired look at catwalk shows.
Famous Jean Paul Gaultier designs:
- Men’s kilts
- Corset with cone bra
- Le Male men’s fragrance
Starting out as a luxury ladies French footwear brand in 1991, Christian Louboutin now also create mens footwear, fragrances, handbags and makeup. Designer Christian Louboutin is most famous for his red lacquer soled shoes. They were inspired by an assistant’s red nail varnish.
After working for master shoe designer Roger Vivier, Louboutin created his own label which quickly attracted a celebrity clientele. Princess Caroline of Monaco, Tina Turner and Christina Aguilera are all fans. Sarah Jessica Parker wore Louboutin shoes at her wedding.
Famous Christian Louboutin designs:
- Pigalle Red soled stiletto shoes
- Rouge Red nail varnish
- Loubishark sneakers for men and women
A French luxury fashion house founded in 1952 by designer Hubert de Givenchy, the brand is known for its elegant designs and luxury handbags. Givenchy achieved critical acclaim with the design of his first collection, with a sober yet innovative, traditional yet modern style.
Givenchy created the little black dress worn by Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. The designer and the actress became life long friends.
Givenchy’s elegant French style is popular with famous actresses and celebrities, including Liv Tyler, Madonna, Jennifer Lopez, Rachel Weisz and Nicole Kidman. Creative directors who have worked for the brand include Riccardo Tisci and currently Clare Waight Keller.
Givenchy famous designs:
- Little Black Dress
- The Balloon Coat
- The Baby Doll Dress
A luxury French fashion house founded in the 1970s by the late designer Thierry Mugler, the brand is renowned for its avant-garde collections. Mugler created signature looks for many celebrities such as David Bowie, Michael Jackson and Diana Ross.
His black dress worn by Demi Moore in the movie Indecent Proposal is one of the most iconic looks of the 90s. Creative directors who have worked for the brand include Nicola Formichetti and currently Casey Cadwallader.
Mugler famous designs:
- Beyoncés custom made bodysuits
- Angel and Angel Men perfume
- The Wet Dress worn by Kim Kardashian
A luxury French fashion house founded in 1945 by designer Pierre Balmain, the brand is increasingly popular with fashionistas. That’s largely due to the influence of creative director Olivier Rousteing, who is active on social media and dresses celebrities such as Kylie Jenner and Rihanna.
Balmain is also known for its collaborations with other luxury brands, such as H&M and Swarovski. Pierre Balmain himself was famous for his glamorous designs, which were often inspired by historical figures and French royalty. He used ornate embroidery, gold buttons, tassels and intricate pleats in his collections.
During the 1950s and 1960s, Balmain became one of the most influential fashion houses in the world. Balmain’s designs were worn by some of the most famous celebrities of the time, including Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn, and Jackie Kennedy.
Balmain famous designs:
- Audrey Hepburn’s first wedding dress
- Ballet skirts
- Classic Balmain blazer with gold buttons
Founded in 1847 by Louis-François Cartier, this French jewelry and watch brand has created some of the most iconic luxury goods of all time. Cartier has a long and storied history, having been favored by European royalty and Hollywood celebrities alike.
Cartier is known for its innovative use of new materials, such as platinum and titanium. The brand’s history began when Louis-François Cartier took over the workshop of his mentor, Adolphe Picard.
Cartier quickly gained a reputation for his high-quality and stylish jewelry. Cartier’s big break came in 1858 when Empress Eugenie, the wife of Napoleon III, commissioned a Cartier necklace. By the early 1900s, Cartier was one of the most well-known jewelers in the world.
Cartier famous designs:
- Love bracelet
- Tank watch
- Panther brooch
This luxury French fashion house was founded in 1932 by Maria “Nina” Ricci and her son Robert.
Nina Ricci designed many of the houses most iconic pieces, including the Nina Ricci L’Air du Temps perfume bottle. She was known for her use of delicate fabrics and detailed craftsmanship.
The brand is also famous for its feminine designs, which Nina crafted directly on mannequins so that they would keep their shape once completed. Nina Ricci outfits were often worn by Hollywood stars such as Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn.
Famous Nina Ricci designs:
- L’Air du Temps perfume
- Bell-skirted suit
- Sugar pink jacket and dress worn by Rihanna in 2018
Jacquemus is a French fashion house founded in 2009 by designer Simon Porte Jacquemus. The brand quickly gained a reputation for its contemporary and avant-garde designs, as well as its use of unexpected materials and bold silhouettes.
Jacquemus has been worn by celebrities such as Rihanna, Kendall Jenner, and Bella Hadid. The brand has also been featured in major publications such as Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and Elle.
Jacquemus has won numerous awards, including the prestigious LVMH Prize in 2015. It famously presented its 2019 collection, Le Coup du Soleil, in a lavender field, ensuring plenty of Instagram coverage 😉
Jacquemus famous designs:
- Le Chiquito mini handbag
- Oversized straw hat
- Jewel heel shoe
One of the best French fashion brands, Chloé was established in 1952 by Gaby Aghoin in Paris. Chloé’s designs are known for being feminine, delicate, and romantic.
Chloé has been worn by many famous women, including Cameron Diaz, Katie Holmes and January Jones. Chloé is currently owned by Richemont.
Chloé has boutiques all over the world, including in Paris, London, New York, and Las Vegas. Chloé’s current creative director is Gabriela Hearst.
Chloé famous designs:
- Paddington bag
- Susanna boots
- Marcie saddle bag
Isabel Marant is a French fashion designer who was born in Bordeaux in 1967. After working for a number of different designers, she launched her own luxury French fashion brand in 1994. Isabel Marant’s designs are known for their bohemian, free-spirited style.
Isabel Marant has also collaborated with a number of other fashion brands, including Anthropologie and H&M for clothing and L’Oréal Paris for makeup. She was awarded Fashion Designer of the Year at British Glamour’s Women of the Year Awards in 2012.
Isabel Marant famous designs:
- Dicker boots
- Bekket sneakers
- Etoile line
In Conclusion: Luxury French Brands
So, if you’re looking for a luxurious French brand that will make you look and feel your best, these are the ones to check out. We’ve only scratched the surface of what France has to offer in terms of fashion – be sure to read our other style articles for more ideas.
In the meantime, shop confidently knowing that these French clothing brands will always deliver high-quality products and styles that will turn heads. Merci, mes amis!
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