The 8 most popular fashion brands

Elegant classic, chic or contemporary, each haute couture house offers creations in its own image. Here are the 8 most searched fashion brands on Barnebys.

“Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what happens.”

The fashion world has always been synonymous with glamor and luxury. Many items signed by major brands, from handbags to haute couture clothing, are highly sought after at auction today. More than simple fabrics, certain creations, such as the Valentino ball gown or the Chanel bag, have changed the perception of the body and the sexes in society. Here are the eight most searched fashion brands on Barnebys.

8. Balenciaga

Balenciaga, picture Irving Penn

A designer to Spain’s crowned heads, Cristobal Balenciaga (1895-1972) worked in San Sebastian until 1927, when he moved to Paris at the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, her haute couture shows breathed new life into the Empire waistline and set the catwalks ablaze with innovative pieces such as the high-waisted Baby Doll dress, the Balloon jacket or the Sack dress .. Balenciaga also designed Queen Fabiola of Belgium’s wedding dress in 1960 and First Lady Jackie Kennedy’s ivory dress, which she wore to the presidential inaugural ball in 1961. Although he closed his house in 1968, the brand was brought back in 1986 and today specializes in chic with an urban twist, as evidenced by Classic City and Motocross handbags and high-end streetwear collections.


Burberry three-quarter trench coat by Audrey Hepburn, early 1980s, image © Christie's

An emblem of British fashion, the Burberry label was founded in 1856 by Thomas Burberry (1835-1926), who was then selling clothing in gabardine, a waterproof woolen fabric of his own invention. The brand’s coats were worn by the greatest explorers of the 20th century, but also by British officers during the First World War who unwittingly gave it the name “trench-coat” ( trench translating to trench ). After the conflict, the Burberry trench coat, with its inner lining featuring the famous checkered pattern, became popular. In the 1970s, the brand expanded its range to ready-to-wear, accessories, handbags, shoes and cosmetics.


Model in profile wearing a black satin Christian Dior evening dress, a long white glove holding a fan, image © Erwin Blumenfeld / Condé Nast via Getty Images

In the aftermath of the Second World War, Christian Dior (1905-1957) presented his first models: loose, puffy skirts cut at mid-calf and jackets with fitted waists that turned heads and revolutionized fashion codes. In the 1950s, Dior created complete collections, including ready-to-wear, haute couture, hats, accessories and perfumes. Dior soon represented 50% of French exports in the field of fashion and caught the attention of the greatest actresses of the time, such as Marilyn Monroe and Marlene Dietrich, who inspired the historic phrase: “No Dior, no Dietrich”. Even after the death of the founder in 1957, the brand endured, more elegant than ever, and established its reputation with flagship creations such as the famous Lady Dior bag.(1995) named after Princess Diana, the Eau Sauvage eau de toilette (1966) and the timeless J’adore line (1999).


Model with floral pattern bag from Gucci by Frida Giannini, image © Arthur Elgort/Conde Nast via Getty Images

The world’s best-selling Italian brand, Gucci was launched in 1921 under the leadership of Guccio Gucci (1881-1853), who opened his first high-end leather goods boutique in Florence. The brand has spread throughout Italy with its decorated moccasins and canvas luggage and handbags. In the 1950s and 1960s, Gucci was a worldwide phenomenon, diversifying its lines with belts, eyewear, jewelry and even sports cars. In the 1990s, stylist Tom Ford came to propel “porn chic” as the image of the fashion house: he was to transform the old Italian leather goods maker into a leading luxury and sexy company. Gucci today includes items adorned with the famous monogram and red and green stripes, the signet ring marked with the initials and the bamboo handle.


Valentino red velvet and satin ball gown by Elizabeth Taylor with scarlet and beaded satin evening bag, image © Christie's

Named after 1920s movie star Rudolf Valentino, designer Valentino Garavani (b. 1932) founded his eponymous label in 1960 in Rome. Inspired by Parisian haute couture, Valentino’s extravagant and feminine outfits were all the rage throughout the second half of the 20th century, especially his sumptuous red dresses inspired by dresses of yesteryear. Although the designer retired in 2008, the brand is still as popular as ever and the vintage pieces particularly coveted at auction.

3. Hermes

A Hermes Birkin and a Hermes Kelly at auction at Bonhams, Knightsbridge, image © Rune hellestad/Corbis via Getty Images

Launched as an equestrian accessories boutique in Paris in 1837 by Thierry Hermès (1801-1878), the brand is today the emblem of French luxury. Success struck in the 1920s, with the arrival of handbags and silk scarves. The Kelly bag , created for Grace Kelly, and the Birkin bag, for and by actress Jane Birkin, are probably the two most recognizable Hermès creations. The demand was such that the brand had to set up a waiting list that could stretch to several months. The equally iconic silk squares were worn by Queen Elizabeth II and Audrey Hepburn, and there are over 2,000 screen-printed designs. Today, the famous brand also offers ready-to-wear, perfumes, silk ties and even decoration.

2.Louis Vuitton

A collection of four Louis Vuitton suitcases, leather, each padlock stamped

The logo is ubiquitous today, but who was Louis Vuitton? Vuitton (1821-1892) was the leading trunk maker in Paris from 1854, and the official luggage maker of Empress Eugénie, wife of Napoleon III. He designed lightweight, stackable travel trunks and even invented the first anti-pick lock. The famous “LV” monogram was patented in 1896 and throughout the 20th century the brand expanded its range of leather goods to handbags and wallets, up to ready-to-wear in the 1990s, with Marc Jacobs at the bar. Speedy and Neverfull bagsare the brand’s most famous. Vuitton has also collaborated with famous artists such as Yayoi Kusama, Takashi Murakami and Urs Fischer, on pieces produced in limited editions.


Coco Chanel in Paris, France, January 1963, in her classic Chanel suit, image © Michael Hardy / Daily Express / Hulton Archive / Getty Images

The most sought-after brand by Barnebys users, Chanel began in 1909 when Gabrielle Coco Chanel (1883-1971) opened a hat shop in Paris. As the role of women changed to adapt to the First World War, Chanel’s creations responded to the phenomenon: jersey sweaters, blouses and woolen skirts formed the Chanel “costume” in the 1920s. the designer: “Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what happens”.

In 1921, Chanel launched perfume n°5, its signature. Throughout the 20th century, the brand featured haute couture, perfumes, ready-to-wear, fine jewelry (including its famous pearls) and the iconic 2.55 quilted handbag, named after its launch date. After Coco’s death, Karl Lagerfeld took over, re-energizing the brand’s traditional designs in a more avant-garde style. The mythical logo illustrating two intertwined Cs, which appeared in the early 1990s, is now synonymous with French elegance and femininity.