PARIS Giambattista Valli and Iris Van Herpen have been elected guest members of the Chambre Syndicale’s couture calendar.

The designers will present collections during couture week in either July or January 2012, though it is not yet known in what capacity.

Known for her handmade, avant-garde silhouettes that fuse innovation with traditional craftsmanship, Herpen, 28, based in Arnhem, Holland, already showed off schedule during Paris couture week in January.

Valli, 40, has shown on Paris’ ready-to-wear schedule since launching his brand in 2005 after a long design career at Emanuel Ungaro.

Boasting a sprawling atelier, showroom and a boutique just off the Place de la Madeleine, the designer has established himself as a go-to guy for Europe’s social set, with bridal and private couture orders representing a healthy chunk of his business.

Couture’s guest members are elected by houses that already carry the official couture appellation. This represents a total of 15 brands, including four “correspondent” members: Giorgio Armani, Valentino, Elie Saab and Maison Martin Margiela.

A designer has to have been a guest couture member for a minimum of five years before being eligible for an official haute couture appellation.

The Chambre Syndicale now counts nine guest couture members in total, including Alexandre Vauthier, Alexis Mabille, Bouchra Jarrar, Maison Rabih Kayrouz and Maxime Simoens.

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