How to Properly Pronounce the Names of 20 French Designers

Perrie Samotin
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how to pronounce designer names

A couple of months ago, we discovered that a fairly hefty amount of people were typing the words “Armez bags” into Google every month. After a second or two, we realized they were searching for Hermes bags, but—for folks who aren’t exactly fashion followers—the phonetic spelling actually makes perfect sense. French words are hard! And, to be fair, Hermes isn’t the only designer name to throw people for a serious loop.

In fact, it almost seems like having a tricky-to-pronounce label name is a rite of passage for many high-end designers (How many silent H and S sounds can an amateur linguist handle?!) Even fashion editors like us occasionally get stumped when it comes to flawlessly verbalizing even the most ubiquitous French brand names like Louis Vuitton and Givenchy.

In honor of Paris Fashion Week’s kick off, we’ve compiled a handy guide that teaches you how to properly pronounce 20 French designer names—From Alaia to Rochas.

how to pronounce designer names

Ann Demeulemeester

Pronunciation: Ann De-Mule-Eh-Meester

how to pronounce designer names

Azzedine Alaia

Pronunciation: Azz-Eh-Deen Ah-Lie-Ah

how to pronounce designer names

Balenciaga

Pronunciation: Bah-Len-See-Ah-Gah

how to pronounce designer names

Balmain

Pronunciation: Bahl-Mahhhhn

how to pronounce designer names

Carven

Pronunciation: Cahr-Vehn

how to pronounce designer names

Comme Des Garcons

Pronunciation: Comb Dey Gah-Sown

how to pronounce designer names

Dries Van Noten

Pronunciation: Drees Van Know-Ten

how to pronounce designer names

Giambattista Valli

Pronunciation: Gee-Am-Bah-Tease-Ta Vah-Lee

how to pronounce designer names

Givenchy

Pronunciation: Zjee-Von-Shee

how to pronounce designer names

Hermes

Pronunciation: Er-Mez

how to pronounce designer names

Issey Miyaki

Pronunciation: Iss-ee Mee-Yah-Key 

how to pronounce designer names

Jean Paul Gaultier

Pronunciation: Zhon Paul Go-Tee-Ay

how to pronounce designer names

Junya Watanabe

Pronunciation: Jun-Yah Wat-An-Ah-Bey

how to pronounce designer names

Lanvin

Pronunciation: Lahn-Vahn

how to pronounce designer names

Louis Vuitton

Pronunciation: Loo-Wee Vwee-Tahn

how to pronounce designer names

Maison Martin Margiela

Pronunciation: May-Sohn Martin Mar-Jhell-Ah

how to pronounce designer names

Miu Miu

Pronunciation: Mew-Mew

how to pronounce designer names

Rochas

Pronunciation: Row-Shahs

 

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