A Lesson in Fashion Pronunciation

With New York Fashion Week and the unveiling of next season’s collections a mere three weeks away, I’ve compiled a handy guide to get you though those Fashion Week chats, namely, how to pronounce those tricky designers names.

We’ve all got that one friend who gushes about “Moschino” pronouncing it “Machine-o” and we all turn a blind eye whilst secretly shuddering inside.  Well no more!  Here’s Fashion Voyeur’s guide to nailing Fashion Week chat:

1. Moschino Let’s just dive in and get this one over and done with.  it’s ‘Mos-key-no’ end of.  Move on.

2. Hermes Often pronounced as ‘Her-mez’ Stop it.  It’s ‘Er-mez’ knowing this will score you points at Fashion Week.

3. Givenchy Given that you’re reading this, I’m assuming you have an interest in fashion and therefore know that the G here is not pronounced, if you don’t already know this then shame on you.  Usually pronounced ‘Ji-von-sheee’ Nope.  it’s ‘zji-von-shey’ often followed with ‘bitches’ in fashion circles.

4. Ralph Lauren Should come with a slap warning.  If you’re in the ‘Ralph Lau-REN’camp of pronunciation then unfortunately you’re just not fashion darling. ‘Ralph Lauren’ like it’s spelled, like the girls name. yes Lauren.  Ralph Lauren.  Simple.  like the people in the latter camp.

5. Rodarte why is this so hard? It’s ‘Ro-dar-tay’ easy.

6. Balmain Total. Minefield.  It’s not ‘Bal-main’ or ‘Bal-mine’ or even ‘Bal-man’  it’s resolutely ‘Bahl-mahhn’ and it seems even H&M employees weren’t educated on this, cue eye-roll emoji.

7. Lanvin I kind of get it with this one but let’s iron this out once and for all.  Stop saying ‘Lan-vin’ it’s longer than that ‘Laan-vahn’ then pause for effect and admiration.

8. Loewe One of my bugbears is hearing supposed Fash Folk refer to Loewe as ‘Lo-wey’  Desist immediately.  It’s ‘Lo-wave-ey’ and it’s an essential in the Fashionista’s bible, do not expect praise for getting this right.

9. Sonia Rykiel Totally underrated designer but that’s not why we’re here, often mispronounced as either ‘Sonia Ry-keel’ or ‘Sonia Ry-kel’  Correct pronunciation is ‘Sonia Ry-key-el’ if you learn one thing today, let this be it, it’s somebody’s name goddamn it.

10. Saint Laurent If you’re not au fait with this one then shame on you, its Francais and pronounced ‘San Lau-ront’

11. Balenciaga I’m only including this because of horrific pronunciation overheard by staff in Cruise recently, it’s ‘Bal-en-see-agar’ you know, as it looks.

12. Christian Louboutin If you’re pronouncing this ‘Le-BOOT-in’ then leave this page immediately, we can no longer be friends and there is literally no hope for you.  It’s ‘LOU-buh-ton’ say it, learn it, remember it.

13. Proenza Schouler Hip brand, hipper name, if pronounced correctly. ‘Pro-enza Skool-a’ there’s no ‘sh’ in there, don’t be one of THOSE people.

14. Marchesa Absolutely not ‘March -essa’ or even ‘Mar-kessa’ why would it be?? it’s ‘Mar-kay-za’

15. Hervé Léger I won’t even go into the various mispronunciations of this, people be cray with some of their interpretations of what these two short words say.  If you own a signature Léger bandage dress and have been pronouncing this incorrectly, then promptly but it, you are not fit to wear it.  The correct pronunciation is ‘Air-vay Lay-jah’

And so concludes our lesson today, if you’ve learned something please share this article and your new found knowledge!

See you on the Frow….

Pixie x

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