Famed haute couture fashion designer, Hubert de Givenchy dies aged 91

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Hubert de Givenchy, the aristocratic French fashion designer has died.

De Givenchy founded one of the world's leading fashion houses in Paris in the 1950s and then struck out for NY, going on to build a business empire that became part of the LVMH empire when he sold up in at the end of the 1980s.

His partner Philippe Venet confirmed the news to AFP Monday and said he died in his sleep on March 10. "He will be greatly missed".

Hubert de Givenchy, the iconic French fashion designer, is known for his classic designs and for styling women like Audrey Hepburn and Jacqueline Kennedy.

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"Not only was he one of the most influential fashion figures of our time, whose legacy still influences modern day dressing", wrote Givenchy artistic director Clare Waight Keller on his passing, "but he also was one of the chicest most charming men I have ever met".

A towering man of elegance and impeccable manners, he forged close friendships with his famous clients, from Hollywood screen sirens of the likes of Liz Taylor and Lauren Bacall to women of state, including Jackie Kennedy and Princess Grace of Monaco.

French designers Yves Saint-Laurent and Hubert de Givenchy pose together 21 October 1991 in Galliera Museum during a reception honoring Givenchy for his 40 years in fashion.

She became his muse, and he designed her suits and woollen dresses for the musical Funny Face in 1957, and the light-hearted heist caper How to Steal a Million in 1966.

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In 1988, the Givenchy brand was eventually sold to LVMH, a luxury brand that owns companies like Moet, Loius Vuitton, and others.

Fashion mogul Bernard Arnault, head of the giant LVMH group which now owns Givenchy, led the tributes, saying that Givenchy "was one of the creators who put Paris at the summit of world fashion in the 1950s".

The designer's nephews and nieces, and their children, share Mr Venet's grief, his statement added.

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