Fashion & Beauty

Fashion and Versailles

The Château de Versailles—the indisputable birthplace of fashion—continues to inspire glamour and style today.

The royal residence of Versailles—this unparalleled seat of power and seduction—is an important influence on contemporary fashion, inspiring passions and vocations. Since the establishment of the world’s first dress codes under the rule of Louis XIV to incite the whims of the queens and royal mistresses, fashion at Versailles has been a constant and inexhaustible source of inspiration for designers, photographers, decorators, and directors and has launched countless fashion revolutions.

Courtesan Madame de Montespan launched the “innocente” robe to camouflage pregnancy, Sofia Coppola memorialized Marie-Antoinette in extravagant wigs and pastel hues, and Annie Leibovitz captured Kirsten Dunst in a delicate taffeta-and-chiffon Alexander McQueen gown against the dramatic backdrop of a peristyle at Versailles. Haute couture in the 1950s launched the cinched-waist “neo-trianon” trend. Karl Lagerfeld used the château’s gardens as the runway for his 2013 cruise collection featuring Versailles-influenced crinoline dresses and brocade jackets.

This stunning volume showcases the best of fashion inspired by Versailles, set against the exquisite background of the most spectacular palace in the world.

About The Author

Journalist and fashion writer Laurence Benaïm has written many books including Lancel: Parisian Maison Since 1876, Women in Dior: Portraits of Elegance, Dior: The New Look Revolution, and a biography of Yves Saint Laurent. She created the style supplement for the newspaper Le Monde and has contributed to Vogue and Marie Claire. She is an editorial adviser for Le FigaroCatherine Pégard is president of the public establishment of the Palace, Museum and National Estate of Versailles.

  • Publish Date: February 06, 2018
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Category: Design - Fashion & Accessories
  • Publisher: Flammarion
  • Trim Size: 9-1/2 x 12-1/4
  • Pages: 240
  • US Price: $65.00
  • CDN Price: $85.00
  • ISBN: 978-2-08-020335-9


"Laurence Benaim has found a way to deftly intertwine the importance of the palace within the world of international history and weave it into the world of fashion. It is a fascinating way to mesh the past and the present without being a dry, historical, fact-laden read. The visuals throughout the book are almost luxuriant in their clarity, which offers detailed aspects of clothes, accessories, precious jewels, and the location itself. " 

"This new book chronicles the very best of fashion influenced by the grand palace, from the days of Louis XIV to the present." 

"Carefully researched, eloquent, and filled with archival images, catwalk moments, Hollywood stills, sketches, and fashion photo shoots at the palace, these pages give credence to the unparalleled excesses, but also the incomparable fashion legacy of Versailles."

"If you are a lover of fashion, history or the lure and luxry of Versailles, then I suggest you pick up a copy of this book. The book in itself is beautiful and the pages are heavy and made of the best quality. This book is going to make a great addition to my large bookshelves. You will be mesmerized by the depth of information that fills these pages; this is a book that you will want to take your time with and really sit down and spend time immersed in the knowledge, history, and beauty of fashions from past and present."

"Fashion and Versailles, overall, is a unique book that stands out for its unique perspective and interesting focus. I highly recommend Fashion and Versailles by Laurence Benaïm to anyone with an interest in Marie Antoinette, 18th-century fashion, and fashion history. Readers who want to know more about the social influence of Versailles and its former inhabitants on current aspects of society will also enjoy this book."

"The book is lavishly filled with fashion photographs amassed at Versailles, fashion inspired by Versailles, and the great portraits that emerged from life there."

Author Bookshelf: Laurence Benaïm

Author Bookshelf: Catherine Pegard