Parisian Haute Couture in the Early 1900s
What’s a better place to show off your new outfit than the popular horse racing tracks in a chic Western neighbourhood of Paris. The popularity of Longchamp, where races were run for the first time in 1857, signalled a general revival in French horse racing, making it the perfect place for designers and fashion lovers to show their new outfit.
The early 1900s mark the full flowering of Parisian haute couture as the arbiter of styles and silhouettes for women of all classes. Designers would send fashion models or mannequins to the Longchamp races, wearing the latest styles. During the event fashion photographs were taken to identify the creators of individual gowns.
Below we have gathered some of these fashion photographs. Explore all photographs of the Grand Prix in Longchamps through Europeana.