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cou·​ture kü-ˈtu̇r How to pronounce couture (audio) -ˈtᵫr How to pronounce couture (audio)
: the business of designing, making, and selling fashionable custom-made clothing
the world of Paris couture
: the designers and establishments engaged in couture
For more than a century, the couture was the undisputed fashion source for women in the Western world.Bernadine Morris
: the clothes created by couture
For them, buying French couture has become a status symbol, something to rack up along with their brand-new BMWs and their hacienda-style villas …Vogue


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: of, relating to, or being high-end custom-made fashion
Neither are these designers unduly concerned about styles that lend themselves to being folded and packed—the couture clientele travels with trunks, not duffel bags, and, presumably, there is always someone on the other end to take care of the wrinkles.Bernadine Morris
However, Owens credits his success to the ease of what he calls his "T-shirt versions of couture dresses."David Colman

Examples of couture in a Sentence

Noun The book discusses the relationship between culture and couture. I can't afford to wear couture.
Recent Examples on the Web
To make the day even more special, both the bride and groom wore couture looks by House of Gilles, which is designed by Chloé’s father, Gilles Mendel of J. Mendel. Alexandra MacOn, Vogue, 21 Sep. 2023 After conquering the fashion industry with their couture eyewear line, the sisters weren’t just content to be entrepreneurial powerhouses. Christopher Cruz, Rolling Stone, 19 Sep. 2023 The couture show involved a clever bait and switch: guests were funnelled through the back door of the Palais Garnier and, unbeknownst to them, onto the main opera-house stage. Rachel Syme, The New Yorker, 18 Sep. 2023 There’s an earnestness here that’s not always felt in some of the more traditional couture circles. Lauren Puckett-Pope, ELLE, 8 Sep. 2023 The company is offering 13 designs inspired by the couture items —silky robes, lacey pants and bustier bras — for sale in late September. Anne D'innocenzio, Fortune, 7 Sep. 2023 SoCal, time to get your fork and your spoon ... Alexander McQueen The late fashion designer was such a visionary of futurist-Edwardian dark glamour that the Met Museum exhibited his couture work. August Brown, Los Angeles Times, 28 Aug. 2023 The actress wore a couture gown from the late Vivienne Westwood, the exact dress inspired by the iconic 1960 Enchanted Evenings Barbie. Emily Rochotte, Redbook, 21 Aug. 2023 Just as high-flying couture clients are no longer simply whisked away on flashy shopping trips but on transformative journeys, the standard-bearers of ultra-high-end travel hospitality have also, over the last decade, leaned into the realm of intrepid experiences. Paul Jebara, Town & Country, 5 Sep. 2023
Focus showed a sneak peek of its brand-new trailer for Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris, a whimsical, heartwarming comedy starring Lesley Manville as a British housekeeper whose dream of owning a couture Christian dress and travels to Paris. Pamela McClintock, The Hollywood Reporter, 27 Apr. 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'couture.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



French, from Old French cousture sewing, from Vulgar Latin *consutura, from Latin consutus, past participle of consuere to sew together, from com- + suere to sew — more at sew

First Known Use


1908, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1916, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of couture was in 1908

Dictionary Entries Near couture

Cite this Entry

“Couture.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Sep. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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