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DESIGNER PRONUNCIATIONS 101

We all know and love the International designers and we can recognise a red Christian Louboutin sole, a short Alia or Herve Leger dress, a Balmain structured tailored jacket, a stunning floral Giambattista Valli dress, and a Louis Vuitton handbag a mile off, but we often struggle with the correct pronunciations. 

So you can join in the next fashion conversation with confidence, The Style Doctor has decoded the names of some of the big International designers.  The Style Doctor has presented you with the correct way of saying designer names so you never look silly again.

ANNA SUI

Is pronounced ah-na swee. The 'ui' is pronounced like a 'w'. 

 

AZZEDINE ALIA

Is pronounced: azz-eh-deen ah-lie-ah

 

BADGLEY MISCHKA

Is pronounced: badge-lee meesh-kah

 

BALENCIAGA

Is pronounced: bah-len-see-ah-gah. 

 

BALMAIN

Is not pronounced like the Sydney suburb it is actually pronounced bal-MAH-n. The ‘n’ is pronounced softly. In French the second syllable is empasised so the ‘MAH’ sound is strong.

 

BOTTEGA VENETA

Is pronounced: bow-tay-guh vah-netta

 

CHRISTIAN LACROIX

Is pronounced: kris-ti-an luh-kwa. 'Lacroix' is French, so the 'r' is pronounced like a 'w' and the 'x' is silent. 

 

CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN

Is pronounced: christian loo-boo-tan

 

COMME DES GARÇONS

Is pronounced: comb dey gar-SON. The 'n' is pronounced softly and 's' is silent. 

 

DIOR HOMME

Is pronounced: dee-OAR om. The 'h' is silent. 

 

DOLCE & GABBANA

Is pronounced: dol-chey and gab-ana

 

DRIES VAN NOTEN

Is pronounced: dreeze van not-en. The 's' is pronounced like a 'z' sound, like the ‘s’ in 'ease'.  

 

GIAMBATTISTA VALLI

Is pronpounced: Gee-am-bah-tease-ta Vah-lee

 

GIVENCHY

Is pronounced: jee-VOHN-shee. The 'G' is soft and the 'i' in French has a more rounded pronunciation. The 'ch' is pronounced soft, like 'chaise' rather than 'chair'. In French, the emphasis is placed on the second syllable (in this case, 'ven'). 

 

HERMÈS

Is pronounced: ehr-mez. Hermès is French, so the ‘h’ is silent. While usually in French if a word ends in 's' it is silent, the grave accent on the second 'e' means that the 's' is very softly pronounced. 

 

HERVÉ LÉGER

Is pronounced: ehr-VAY ley-JAY. As with Hermès, the ‘h’ is silent.  

 

ISSEY MIYAKE

Is pronounced: iss-ee mee-yah-key

 

JEAN PAUL GAULTIER

Is pronounced: JHON Paul GOH-t-ay. The name Jean in French is like our ‘John’ pronunciation not as in denim wear. The 'l' in 'Gaultier' is silent and the 't' is relatively short. 

 

LANVIN

Is pronounced: lohn-vahn. 

 

LOEWE

Is pronounced: Lo-EE-vay. Although it is a Spanish brand, the name is German (it was started by a German craftsman, Enrique Roessberg Loewe). In German, the 'w' is pronounced as a 'v'. 

 

LOUIS VUITTON

Is pronouned: lou-ee VWEE-tah-n (soft ‘n’). Remember – silent 's'! 

 

MARCHESA

Is pronounced: mar-KAY-sah. The name is taken after an Italian socialite, which explains why the 'c' is hard and the 'h' is silent. 

 

MARY KATRANTZOU

Is pronoucned: mary cat-trant-zoo

 

MIU MIU:

Is pronounced: mew-mew

 

MONIQUE LHUILLIER

Is pronounced: mo-NEEK loo-lee-air. 

 

MOSCHINO

Is pronounced: moss-KEY-no. The 'c' has a hard sound, like a 'k' (like 'ski') and the 'h' is silent. 

 

NICHOLAS GHESQUIERE

Is pronounced: NEE-ko-la GUESS-key-air. The 's' in Nicholas is silent because it is the last letter in the word.

 

OLIVIER THEYSKENS

Is pronounced: o-LIV-ee-air TAY-sken-s. The 't' is hard and the 'h' is silent. 

 

PROENZA SCHOULER

Is pronounced: pro-enza SKOO-ler. The 'ch' is pronounced similarly to the 'ch' in 'school'. 

 

ROCHAS

Is pronounced: row-SHAH. The 's' is silent. 

 

RODARTE

Is pronounced: row—DAR-tay. The 'e' is pronounced, making it a three-syllable word. 

 

ROKSANDA ILINIC:

Is pronounced: Rocks-unda ill-in-chick

 

SAINT LAURENT

Is pronounced: San lor-RAUN. Again, remember the silent 't' in French. For the designer, 'Yves' is pronounced 'eeves'. 

 

SALVATORE FERRAGAMO

Is pronounced: Sal-vah-tor-re Fer-ra-gah-moh

 

 

SCHIAPARELLI

Is pronounced: SCAP-a-reli. The 'c' has a hard sound, and the 'h' is silent, like with Moschino. 

 

SONIA RYKIEL

Is pronounced: sewn-yah ree-key-el

 

THAKOON

Is pronounced: tuh-KOON. 'T' is hard with a silent 'h'. 

 

VERSACE

Is pronounced: vur-sah-chee

 

VIONNET

Is pronounced: vee-oh-nay.  The 't' is silent, but since it comes after the 'e', it means the 'e' needs to be pronounced. 

 

ZEGNA

Is pronounced: ZANE-ya. The 'g' is mostly silent. 

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