Paule Vasseur, Paris

By Sophie Gayot

Pretty and Prêt-à-Porter

French Fashion House Paule Vasseur is making a name for itself with its rich, elegant line of occasion wear. There are romantic cocktail dresses in jewel-toned silks; flamboyant yet regal suits ideal for a spring wedding invitation; tailored jackets with fantastic collars destined to make a grand statement at a bar mitzvah; frivolous and flirty frocks perfect for a day of shopping and lunching on Rodeo Drive or Fifth Avenue—and then dashing off to catch a stylish soirée without having to change first.

The creations of Emmanuelle Nagel — who named her line after her grandmother, a “première main” of Haute Couture from whom she inherited her love of luxurious fabrics and evocative designs — are for women who aren’t afraid to make a grand entrance. The pieces evoke haute couture yet are prêt-à-porter and more affordable — which is all the more amazing if you consider the painstaking, careful approach that goes into the making of each item.

Nagel, who started the company in 1995, styles everything herself. She loves vivid colors and unique fabrics, even getting many from interior design showrooms and creating others herself. Murano glass buttons arrive from Italy. India provides lush saffron, azure and gold-colored sari silks. Every single piece, once it returns from the seamstress, is checked carefully before it goes to the client.

What kind of woman wears the expensive French lace, damask linens, brocades, tulles, silks and jacquards that recall the heyday of Lacroix and Hermès? Jane Fonda is a fan, as are Camilla Parker Bowles, Infanta Elena, the Duchess of Bourbon-Parme and the Comtesse de Paris.

Boutique Location:
10, rue de Passy
75016 Paris, France
Tel: +33 (0)1 45 25 37 51
For more information, visit