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Charles Frederick Worth

Worth, Charles Frederick, 1825–95, French and British fashion designer. He was the founder of the Maison Worth in Paris and London, the longest running fashion dynasty, and the arbiter of women's fashions for more than a century. He first designed silks and then became court dressmaker to Empress Eugénie of France and Empress Elizabeth of Austria. He was responsible for the creation of the ancestor of the tailor-made suit and invented the puffed tunic called the Polonaise. He was the first to use live models to exhibit his designs. His descendants continued the business after his death. In 1954 the house was sold to Paquin, and Worth as a London wholesale house continued until the 1970s. Parfums Worth, created in the 1900s is still in business.

See E. Saunders, The Age of Worth (1955).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Fashion: Biographies


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