Pierre Alexandre Claudius Balmain 18 May 1914 – Paris, France, 29 June 1982) was a French fashion designer. Known for sophistication and elegance, he once said that “dressmaking is the architecture of movement.”
Balmain’s father, who died when the future designer was seven years old, was the owner of a wholesale drapery business. His mother and her sisters operated a fashion boutique. Balmain studied architecture at theEcole des Beaux Arts,
but did not complete his studies. He spent his time there designing dresses. While attending the Ecole des Beaux Arts, Balmain went to Molyneux, who promised to give him a trial. Balmain then left his architectural studies to work for the fashion
designer Edward Molyneux for whom he worked from 1934 until 1939. After World War II and opened his own fashion house in 1945. The house showcased long bell-shaped skirts with small waists – a line which later became popular as Dior’s New
Look. In 1951 he opened branches in the United States selling ready-to-wear clothes. During the 1950s, Balmain popularized the stole for day as well as evening wear and created a vogue for sheath dresses beneath jackets. His talent as a designer
lay in his ability to make simple, tailored suits as well as grand evening gowns, all with the same aesthetic of slender and elegant lines. Balmain also designed the iconic uniform of the Singapore Airlines Singapore girl , which is very reflective in the collection today!
Balmain also created perfumes, including Vent Vert (1947), his first successful scent and one of the best-selling perfumes of the late 1940s and early 1950s, Jolie Madame (1953), Ivoire (1979), and Eau d’Amazonie (2006). His first perfume,
launched in 1947, bore his company’s Phone Number, Elysées 64-83.
Balmain’s vintage couture gowns remain chic, sought after and popular among the international jet-set, movie stars and socially prominent women, and have been seen on Angelina Jolie Penelope Cruz Kate moss and Kristin Davis