Fashion Prediction as a Mediation Movement vs. the Common Top-down Theory (Paris, 1825-1975).



The development of several forms of mediation between textile and fashion over a century and a half is a little-known source of success of fashion and ready-to-wear in France. As of 1825 a designer from the Vosges Mountains, Jean Claude, moved to Paris where he made sketches of proposals on behalf of its clients in Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines. He also sends samples of novelties that he identifies in Paris. In 1834 sampling becomes its activity. Established in the Sentier district in Paris, Jean Claude develops its activities toward industrials and from 1855 to schools (Roubaix) and associations of designers (Mulhouse). With a medal at the Exposition Universe"lle of 1878 in Paris Jean Claude’s success bolsters new competition: sampling mediates the latest fashion trends towards professional textile in France and abroad. From 1920 the increased presence in Paris of buyers’ offices for the department stores from New York drives the emergence of a new profession: the styling within the brand-new 'bureaus of stylists ". It is also the beginning of a history in conversation between Paris and New York in the fashion world. After World War II, American influence through women's magazines and productivity missions facilitates the development of women designers in Paris. In the late 1950sn a first bureau of stylist was created and three others in the 1960s. Bureaus of stylist gain increasing influence thus confirming the role of mediation in the development of fashion.

The Business History Seminar is organised by the Business History Centre and has been made possible by financial support from the Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM) and the Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication