15 Famous Fashion Designers You Need to Know

Clothes we see used by the world’s most well-known models and celebrities were made by the most famous fashion designers around the world. Each piece made with unique skills, finishes, and techniques. Their creations serve as inspiration for every industry. Read on to discover Lh’s favorite 15 famous fashion designers that inspire us every day.

Famous Fashion Designers to Know

Yves Saint Laurent

Yves Saint-Laurent, ex-wonder boy of Dior, working at his own fashion house in Paris, 1965
Yves Saint-Laurent, ex-wonder boy of Dior, working at his own fashion house in Paris, 1965.
Photo by Reg Lancaster/Express/Getty Images

One of Lh’s favorite famous fashion designers, Yves Saint Laurent started his career at Christian Dior and it was there that he gained acclaim for his dress designs. In 1996 he launched his own fashion label, which included the famous women’s tuxedo jacket, the high-fashion peacoat, and the shirt dress. In addition to iconic clothing, he was also among the first designers to feature non-white mode.

Mondrian Dresses made by Yves Saint Laurent at The Hague Municipal Museum exhibit 'Mondrian fashion from Paris'
Netherlands January 1996: Mondrian Dresses made by Yves Saint Laurent at The Hague Municipal Museum exhibit ‘Mondrian fashion from Paris’
Source: Nationaal Archief via Wikimedia Commons

Alexander McQueen

famous Fashion designer Alexander McQueen walks down the catwalk after his Ready-to-Wear A/W 2009 fashion show during Paris Fashion Week at POPB in Paris, 2009
Fashion designer Alexander McQueen walks down the catwalk after his Ready-to-Wear A/W 2009 fashion show during Paris Fashion Week at POPB in Paris, 2009
Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Alexander McQueen was head designer of the LV owned Givenchy fashion line. In 1992 he launched the Alexander McQueen brand, known for its controversy and shock tactics. During his time as a designer, McQueen was awarded the title “British Designer of the Year” four times between 1996 and 2003. His first menswear collection was in Spring/Summer 2005 and although Alexander McQueen is no longer alive the brand continues to show its collections during fashion weeks.

A model presents a creation by British designer Alexander McQueen as part of his Spring/Summer 2008 ready-to-wear fashion collection in Paris, Photo by Benoit Tessier / REUTERS / Adobe Stock
A model presents a creation by British designer Alexander McQueen as part of his Spring/Summer 2008 ready-to-wear fashion collection in Paris.
Photo by Benoit Tessier / REUTERS / Adobe Stock

Christian Dior

Famous fashion designer Christian Dior (1905 - 1957) standing in a showroom with samples of his design accessories for women, including hats, hat pins, gloves, muffs, lingerie, hosiery, evening bags, and jewelry
Circa 1955: French fashion designer Christian Dior (1905 – 1957) standing in a showroom with samples of his design accessories for women, including hats, hat pins, gloves, muffs, lingerie, hosiery, evening bags, and jewelry.
Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images

The French Fashion Designer, Christian Dior became famous for his post-World War II creations. After all these years and his death, his legacy continues to influence the fashion industry.

Italian actress Sophia Loren tries on a Christian Dior 'New Line' dress made by Battilocchi of Rome, in a store in Rome, Italy, 6th February 1956.
Italian actress Sophia Loren tries on a Christian Dior ‘New Line’ dress made by Battilocchi of Rome, in a store in Rome, Italy, 6th February 1956.
Photo by Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Coco Chanel

Gabrielle Coco Chanel, 1968, in her apartment at 31 Rue Cambon, Paris
Queen of Iconic Design Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel, 1968, in her apartment at 31 Rue Cambon, Paris
Source: Photo by Pictorial Press Ltd / Alamy Stock Photo

Coco Chanel was born in 1883 and is most famous for her timeless designs, trademark suits, and black dresses. Her designs are still very popular nowadays.


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Coco Always Chanel, Forever a Diva


Elsa Schiaparelli

Elsa Schiaparelli, Legacy, The House of Schiaparelli, Schiaparelli, Female Fashion Designer, Italian Design, Luxury Designers, Haute Couture
Source: The House of Schiaparelli

Elsa Schiaparelli was an Italian Fashion Designer, one of the most prominent figures in fashion between the two world wars. Her designs were heavily influenced by surrealists like her collaborators Salvador Dali and Jean Cocteau. Schiaparelli left NY for France in 1922 and launched her first knitwear collection in 1927. Read The Legacy of Elsa Schiaparelli for everything you need to know on Elsa!

Hubert de Givenchy

French fashion designer Hubert de Givenchy at his design house at the Plaine Monceau in Paris, circa 1955
French fashion designer Hubert de Givenchy at his design house at the Plaine Monceau in Paris, circa 1955.
Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Hubert de Givenchy was known for his elegant haute couture designs. He opened his own design house in 1952 and one of his most famous affiliations was with the actress Audrey Hepburn – who wore his designs in Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Charade.

Audrey Hepburn wearing one of Coco Chanel's famous little black dress designs in Breakfast at Tiffany's, 1961
Audrey Hepburn wearing one of Hubert de Givenchy’s famous dress designs in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, 1961
Source: Breakfast at Tiffany’s trailer screenshot via Wikimedia Commons

Jeanne Lanvin

Famous Fashion Designers - Jeanne Lanvin
Jeanne Lanvin
Source: © Patrimoine Lanvin, Paris / Courtesy of Lanvin

Jeanne Lanvin founded her French fashion house in 1889, just a few years after completing her apprenticeship as a milliner. Today, Lanvin is the fashion house with the longest history of its kind, with nearly 130 years under its belt.

jeanne lanvin famous fashion designers
1939 Gouache Design by Jeanne Lanvin presented at the Golden Gate International Exposition, San Francisco
Source: © Patrimoine Lanvin, Paris / Courtesy of Lanvin

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The Legacy of Jeanne Lanvin


Karl Lagerfeld

Famous Fashion Designers - Karl Lagerfeld
Karl Lagerfeld walks the runway during the Chanel Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2011/2012 show as part of Paris Fashion Week at Grand Palais on July 5, 2011 in Paris, France.
Source: Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Karl Lagerfeld is one of the most acclaimed fashion designers in the world. He was known for his bold designs and constant reinvention. He had his own label, Karl Lagerfeld, but was also the major creative force behind Chanel and Fendi, before his death in 2019.

Chanel Runway at Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2019
Source: Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

In addition to fashion, Karl was also a photographer and worked in the world of home decor.

Les Grands Appartement at Hôtel de Crillon designed by Karl Lagerfeld
Source: Courtesy of Hôtel de Crillon
decadence round brass bookcase by koket

Oscar De La Renta

Designer Oscar de la Renta (C) and model Karlie Kloss (L) walk the runway at the Oscar De La Renta fashion show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Spring 2015, September 2014 in New York City
Designer Oscar de la Renta (C) and model Karlie Kloss (L) walk the runway at the Oscar De La Renta fashion show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Spring 2015, September 2014 in New York City.
Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images

Oscar de la Renta was a Dominican Fashion Designer and became internationally known in the 1960s as one of the couturiers who dressed Jacqueline Kennedy. Read more about Oscar de la Renta!

My role as a designer is to make a woman feel her very best.

Oscar de la Renta

Cristóbal Balenciaga

Cristóbal Balenciaga
Photograph by Louise Dahl-Wolfe, 1950 via Wikimedia Commons

The founder of the fashion house Balenciaga, Cristóbal was known as “The Master” of Haute Couture. His work continues to shape fashion today. Balenciaga’s Spanish heritage influenced many of his most iconic designs.

An evening dress designed by Cristobal Balenciaga with crisp white cotton pique cut away at the front to show a full skirt of soft black silk flounces. Original Publication: Picture Post - 5236 - Afternoon And Evening - pub. 1951
An evening dress designed by Cristobal Balenciaga with crisp white cotton pique cut away at the front to show a full skirt of soft black silk flounces. Original Publication: Picture Post – 5236 – Afternoon And Evening – pub. 1951
Photo by Bill Brandt/Getty Images

Pierre Balmain

famous fashion designers - pierre balmain 1954
French fashion designer Pierre Balmain, 1954
Source: Public domain / Arquivo Nacional Collection / Wikimedia Commons

The iconic fashion house Balmain was founded in 1945 by Pierre Balmain. This luxury brand offers an opulent and feminine signature style that creates a distinctive, super-feminine DNA for the house.

Ralph Lauren

famous fashion designers ralph lauren 2013
Ralph Lauren, 2013
Photo by Arnaldo Anaya-Lucca / Wikimedia Common

Ralph Lauren is an American clothing designer. He is most known for his sportswear line Polo Ralph Lauren, the centerpiece of his fashion empire. This empire includes home furnishings, fragrances, and luxury clothing.

Model Anna Ewers walking the Ralph Lauren Spring/Summer fashion show in September
Model Anna Ewers walking the Ralph Lauren Spring/Summer fashion show in September
Source: Christopher Macsurak / Flickr via Wikimedia Commons

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Behind the Scenes: The Art of Haute Couture


Tom Ford

Tom Ford in London 2012
Tom Ford in London 2012
Photograph by Piero Cruciatti / Alamy Stock Photo

Tom Ford, the acclaimed fashion designer and film director, worked in Gucci from 1994 to 2004. In 2005 he founded its own Tom Ford fashion brand, which offers menswear, eyewear and beauty products.

John Galliano

John Galliano at the VH1/ Vogue Fashion Awards, NYC, 10/19/01
John Galliano at the VH1/ Vogue Fashion Awards, NYC, 10/19/01
Photo by Everett Collection / Shutterstock

John Galliano was head designer of various fashion companies like Givenchy, Christian Dior and his own label John Galliano. At the moment in 2019, he is the creative director of the Parisien fashion house Maison Margiela. He has been named British Fashion Designer of the year four times and in 2004 was named the fifth most influential person in British Couture.

Jean-Paul Gaultier

Jean-Paul Gaultier, Festival de Cannes 2011
Jean-Paul Gaultier, Festival de Cannes 2011
Source: Bernard Boyé / Wikimedia Commons

Jean-Paul Gaultier is a French haute couture fashion designer who founded his fashion label in 1982. During his career, he also served as the creative director at French Luxury House Hermês for womenswear.

Madonna during her "MDNA à l'Olympia" showcase in Paris, France 2012 wearing one of Jean-Paul Gaultier's iconic cone bra corset designs.
Madonna during her “MDNA à l’Olympia” showcase in Paris, France 2012 wearing one of Jean-Paul Gaultier’s iconic cone bra corset designs.
Source: Youngrobv / Wikimedia Commons

Words by Rita Archer

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