Ian Phillips counts the cost of dressing in haute couture outfits
Saturday 16 January 1999
Getting started Minimum price at Christian Lacroix, pounds 7,500; the most basic of suits from an established house, pounds 8,500. (After that, the addition of feathers, crystals and embroidery can easily double the amount.)
Something special Recent examples include a Chanel dress of (real) gold thread, pounds 130,000; Oscar de la Renta simple black suit for Balmain with six large pearl buttons, which each cost pounds 60,000.
Bargains Young Dutch designer Josephus Thimister dress, or a suit from Givenchy's former assistant, Dominque Sirop, pounds 2,175. Otherwise, if you have a model-like figure, you can always buy the "samples" (the actual clothes worn by the models for the shows), which can be adjusted to fit and come at half the price.
The new wardrobe Yves Saint Laurent pantsuit, pounds 21,750; Chanel tweed suit, pounds 13,500; Gaultier evening dress, fully embroidered with sequins and/or pearls, pounds 55,000; Ungaro muslin blouse, pounds 3,800; Mugler wool day dress, pounds 5,400
This season's total pounds 99,450
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