French designer Hubert de Givenchy, founder of the eponymous fashion house, has died aged 91.
Givenchy’s partner, designer Philippe Venet, said he died in his sleep in their home near Paris on 10 March.
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The designer, who founded the house of Givenchy in 1952, was most famous for creating the “little black dress”.
A statement from the company said its founder “symbolized Parisian chic and elegance for more than half a century.”
It added: “His enduring influence and his approach to style reverberates to this day: with his first couture collection, in 1952, he championed the concept of separates. Two years later he became the first designer to launch a high-end ready-to-wear line. And he revolutionized international fashion with the timelessly stylish looks he created for Audrey Hepburn, his great friend and muse for over 40 years. His work remains as relevant today as it was then. He will be greatly missed.”
The label was sold to the LVMH luxury group in 1988, but Givenchy remained head of creative design for a further seven years.
In 2017 British designer Clare Waight Keller became head designer at the fashion label.
Bernard Arnault, chairman and CEO of LVMH, said: “I am deeply saddened by the death of Hubert de Givenchy. He was among those designers who placed Paris firmly at the heart of world fashion post 1950 while creating a unique personality for his own fashion label. In both prestigious long dresses and daywear, Hubert de Givenchy has brought together two rare qualities: to be innovative and timeless. I extend my most sincere condolences to his family and to all those who have known him.”