Worth, Charles Frederick

(1826-1895)
   Born in Bourne, Lincolnshire, England, he started his career working in a dry goods store in London before moving to Paris in 1846, where he worked at a prominent dry goods and dressmaking firm, Gagelin et Opigez. He not only gained experience with fine fabrics and trims but he also met his future business partner, Otto Bobergh, and future wife, Marie Vernet. In 1856, they opened Worth and Bobergh. However, the partnership dissolved in 1870 due to Bobergh's retirement and the Franco-Prussian War. Worth reopened in 1871 as the House of Worth. Acting as his muse, Worth's wife attracted the attention of the French aristocracy and, in 1860, Worth became the official court couturier under Empress Eugénie. Soon, women came from as far as the United States to be fitted for dresses at the house. Throughout the years, his client list consisted of royals such as Queen Victoria and members of the royal families of Spain, Russia, Italy, and Germany. He also dressed film and opera celebrities including Sarah Bernhardt, Lillie Langtry, Cora Pearl, and Eleanora Duse. American society women Mrs. J. P. Morgan and the Vanderbilts, Stanfords, Hewitts, Astors, and Palmers were devoted fans of Worth. Even courtesans were devotees.
   Known as the first couturier and the "father of the couture," Worth earned that name because he did not let his customers dictate design, which had been the practice until then. Rather, he was the first to design and display, via a fashion show on live models, his own creations for women to choose from, four times a year. He would allow the client to select the style, fabrics, and trim and, using the highest standards of sewing, would tailor the clothing as made-to-measure to fit each customer's figure. Worth dressed like an artist, with a beret and oversized smock, and revolutionized the business of dressmaking because he considered himself an artist rather than an artisan/dressmaker and, because of his popularity, he was able to turn clients away, which only added to his éclat. Worth is credited with the creation of the tailor-made suit, the puffed sleeve known as the Polonaise, and voluminous skirts that not only defined the Gilded Age of the French Second Empire but kept the French textile industry economically sound. In 1868, Worth's sons, Jean-Philippe and Gaston, entered the business and founded the Chambre Syndicale de la haute couture. The company flourished over the span of four generations making it the longest-running couture house to date. However, after World War II, the house merged with the house of Paquin, although both closed in 1956, leaving only the Worth fragrance on the market today.
   See also Haute Couture.

Historical Dictionary of the Fashion Industry. .

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  • Worth, Charles Frederick — born Oct. 13, 1825, Bourne, Lincolnshire, Eng. died March 10, 1895, Paris, France British born French fashion designer. In 1845 he left England, where he had been a bookkeeper, and worked in a Paris dress accessories shop. In 1858 he opened his… …   Universalium

  • Worth, Charles Frederick — (13 oct. 1825, Bourne, Lincolnshire, Inglaterra–10 mar. 1895, París, Francia). Diseñador de modas francés de origen británico. En 1845 abandonó Inglaterra donde había sido tenedor de libros, y trabajó en una tienda de accesorios de vestuario… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Charles Frederick Worth — Born 13 October 1825(1825 10 13) Bourne, Lincolnshire, England Died 10 March 1895 …   Wikipedia

  • Charles Frederick Worth — (13 de octubre de 1825 10 de marzo de 1895) fue un diseñador de modas nacido en el Reino Unido. Es considerado el padre de la alta costura. Esta afirmación se debe a que fue pionero a la hora de firmar sus diseñ …   Wikipedia Español

  • Charles Frederick Worth — (* 13. November 1826 in Bourne, Lincolnshire; † 10. März 1895 in Paris) gilt als der Begründer der Haute Couture. Leben Worth absolvierte zuerst in zw …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Charles Frederick Worth — Nom de naissance Charles Frederick Worth Naissance 1 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Charles Frederick (American football) — Charles Frederick No.       Free Agent Defensive Back / Wide receiver Personal information Date of birth: February 2, 1982 (1982 02 02) (age 29) …   Wikipedia

  • Charles Frederick Worth — noun French couturier (born in England) regarded as the founder of Parisian haute couture; noted for introducing the bustle (1825 1895) • Syn: ↑Worth • Instance Hypernyms: ↑couturier, ↑fashion designer, ↑clothes designer, ↑designer …   Useful english dictionary

  • Charles Frédéric Worth — Charles Frederick Worth Charles Frederick Worth Nom de naissance Charles Frederick Worth Naissance 13 octobre 1826 Bourne, Lincolnshire, Royaume Uni …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Charles — /chahrlz/, n. 1. (Prince of Edinburgh and of Wales) born 1948, heir apparent to the throne of Great Britain (son of Elizabeth II). 2. Ray (Ray Charles Robinson), born 1930, U.S. blues singer and pianist. 3. Cape, a cape in E Virginia, N of the… …   Universalium

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