PARIS — Couture week here will be more abbreviated than ever.
Jean-Louis Scherrer said on Friday that it would not stage a couture show in January as part of a “redefinition of its global strategy.”
Though the house said it would continue couture activity, the decision to drop from the calendar, with shows set for Jan. 23-26, underscores how difficult it has become for houses to justify the expense of the money-losing venture.
Last year, couture stalwarts Emanuel Ungaro, Versace and Hanae Mori all bid adieu to couture, although the new owner of Ungaro has ambitions to return to the runway next year. Yves Saint Laurent and Balmain also recently discontinued couture.
Under the guidance of managing director Charles-Edouard Barthes, Scherrer liked to brag that it was among the few houses to turn a profit with its couture. But Barthes has left the house to found a cosmetics and fragrance business, concentrating mostly on Asia.
Scherrer said it would now concentrate on ready-to-wear, staging its first show in several seasons during Paris Fashion Week in March.
Scherrer is owned by French real estate entrepreneur Alain Dumenil, who has assembled a stable of historic names — Jacques Fath, Louis Féraud, Francesco Smalto, Emmanuelle Khanh and Stephane Kélian — that he has been trying to elevate to their past glory.