Cristobal Balenciaga

Cristobal Balenciaga

Spanish couturier.
Date of Birth: 21.01.1895
Country: Spain

  1. Biography of Cristobal Balenciaga
  2. Move to London and Paris
  3. Return to Spain and Alternative Style
  4. Honorary Legion Order and Retirement
  5. Collaborations and Successors

Biography of Cristobal Balenciaga

Cristobal Balenciaga, a Spanish couturier, was born in Guetaria, Basque Country. In 1919, with the assistance of Marquesa de Casa-Torres, he opened a salon in San Sebastian. By 1931, members of the royal family became his clients. In 1933, he collaborated with Pedro Rodriguez to open a fashion house called "Eisa" in Madrid, followed by another one in Barcelona in 1935.

Move to London and Paris

During the Spanish Civil War in 1936, Balenciaga moved to London and then relocated to Paris in 1937, where he established his high fashion house. In the late 1930s, he presented exquisite stylizations inspired by historical costumes.

Return to Spain and Alternative Style

In 1939, Balenciaga reopened three fashion houses in Spain. In the 1950s, his style became an alternative to Christian Dior's "New Look." In 1950, Balenciaga introduced a collarless blouse, followed by the evening sheath dress and shirt dress in 1952. In 1954-1955, he created the semi-fitted silhouette known as "1", as well as dresses with tunics. In 1956, Balenciaga introduced the "sack" line, and in 1958, he designed dresses with an elevated waistline. He also worked for the cinema and theater industry.

Honorary Legion Order and Retirement

Balenciaga was awarded the Honorary Legion Order in 1958. In 1968, he retired and closed his high fashion house. In 1986, the license for Balenciaga's ready-to-wear and fragrances was acquired by French stylist and entrepreneur Jacques Konckier, who revived the Balenciaga brand.

Collaborations and Successors

The House of Balenciaga collaborated with M. Goma, J.M. Timister, and since 1997, with N. Ghesquiere.