- Designer clothes sold ready-to-wear rather than made to measure.
- (Of designer clothes) Sold ready-to-wear as opposed to made to measure.
“I think the designer’s prêt-à-porter collection this year is more original than the couture collection.”
“That designer used to be out of my budget, but he just launched a prêt-à-porter collection.”
“Even prêt-à-porter clothes can be taken to a tailor to get them to fit perfectly to your body.”
French, mid-20th century
Why this word?
“French” is practically synonymous with “fashionable,” so it makes sense that so much of the fashion industry’s vocabulary is still rooted in the language. “Prêt-à-porter” translates directly to “ready-to-wear,” which is the term for clothes that are still designer in nature, but made in large quantities to fit standard sizes. This is opposed to “couture,” which is the term for designer clothes that are made specifically to a client’s measurements. Most major designers have both couture and prêt-à-porter lines — sometimes they are completely different creations, but often the prêt-à-porter collection is a simplified version of the couture, making high fashion more accessible and affordable.
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