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Book Review: Maison Lesage Haute Couture Embroidery

Maison Lesage is a dynastic house of haute couture embroidery that worked with the who’s who of the fashion industry – Vionnet, Schiaparelli, Balenciaga, Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Givenchy, and Chanel.

This book draws the link from the very inception of Maison Lesage by Albert and his wife Marie Louise Lesage when they initially collaborated with the atelier of Albert Michonet, embroiderer to Napoleon III, through the difficulties of economic crisis and WWII to recognition and new clients in America.

Author, Patrick Mauriès, has published many notable titles on fashion and design, so knows how to research and produce a book to hold a reader’s interest – and Maison Lesage certainly does that.

Supported by exquisite, specially commissioned close-up photography of some of Maison Lesage’s historic creations, the images showcase luscious fabrics peppered with magnificent elegant embroidery and embellishment.

The book begins with a brief overview of the idea of luxury and a taste for sumptuous fabrics and flamboyance that became a guiding principle leading to the very beginnings of haute couture.

And Patrick Mauriès also shows how Lesage became synonymous with innovation collaborating with couturiers as different as Vionnet and Schiaparelli, requiring different approaches in the design for embroidery as a result.

Innovation and the ability to combine modernity with the traditional became the hallmark of Maison Lesage, enabling the fashion house to ride the difficult tides of economic crisis and war.

This is a fascinating insight into a world-renowned embroidery house and its relationship with remarkable couturiers and Hollywood stars.

A beautiful book, bursting with spangles, sequins, bugles, tiny beads, and unusual applications of materials, and thread – unified by a level of unbelievable and inspiring craftsmanship.

First published in the United Kingdom in 2020 by Thames and Hudson Ltd, London.



Maison Lesage Haute Couture Embroidery
Patrick Mauriès
With links going back to Napoleon III via the atelier of Albert Michonet, the dynastic Maison Lesage collaborated with renowned names in fashion history, marking it as the most famous embroidery house in the world, continuing still under the brand Chanel.

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