How To: Pronouce Designer Names

HOW TO PRONOUNCE DESIGNER NAMES featured by popular San Francisco fashion blogger, Just Add Glam

This past weekend when I was doing a little retail therapy, one of the salesgirls helping me said “I love your Pro-enza Shou-lay sweatshirt”. I might have looked a bit puzzled as I thanked her for complimenting my lazy Sunday sweatshirt outfit because I thought to myself, “Have I been pronouncing the designers’ name incorrectly all along?” I had always thought it was Pro-enza Skool-er? This got me thinking…how many other designer names were we mispronouncing? Check out my guide on how to pronounce designer names.

If you’ve ever been curious, look no further! I’ve rounded up a list of the correct pronunciations for the creme de la creme of today’s designers. Here’s to a lesson in haute couture phonetics!

How to Pronounce your Favorite Designer Names

Abaeté: Ah-bye-ah-tay
Alejandro Ingelmo: Allay-handro In-gel-mo
Andrew Gn: Andrew Jen
Andy Thê-Anh: An-dee Tay-Ann
Anya Hindmarch: Ahn-ya Heind-march
Arthur Mendonça: Ar-thur Men-doe-sa
Badgley Mischka: Badge-lee Meesh-ka
Balenciaga: Bah-len-see-AH-gah
Bottega Veneta: Bo-tega Ven-e-ta
Bulgari: Ball-gah-ree
Burberry Prorsum: Bur-bur-ree Pror-some
Cacharel: Cash-er-el
Carolina Herrera: Caro-leena Hair-era
Cesare Paciotti: Che-sah-ray Pah-cho-tee
Chaiken: Chay-ken
Chanel: Shuh-nel
Christian Louboutin: Loo-boo-tahn
Christian Dior: Christian Dee-yor
Commes des Garcons: Comb day Garse-on
Dolce & Gabbana: Dole-chay and Gabb-ana
Dries Van Noten: Drees Van Know-ten
Ermenegildo Zegna: Er-men-a-geel-do Zen-ya
Etro: Eh-tro
Fendi: Fend-ee
Gareth Pugh: Gareth Pew
Giles Deacon: Jy-els Dee-kin
Givenchy: Jhee-von-shee
Giambattista Valli: Gee-ahm-battista Valley
Gianfranco Ferre: Sj-yawn-franco Fair-ay
Gucci: Goo-chee
Guy Laroche: Ghee La-roash
Hedi Slimane: Eddy Sli-mahn
Hermès: Air-mez
Hervé Léger: Air-vay Le-jay
Hussein Chalayan: Who-sane Sha-lion
Issey Miyake: Eees-Ay Me-Yah-Kee not Is-he
Jean Paul Gaultier: Jawn Paul Goat-ee-ay
Joeffer Caoc: Joe-fur Kay-ock
Junya Watanabe: Joon-ya Wah-tah-nah-bay
Lacroix: La-kwah
Lanvin: Lan-van
Loewe: Low-ev-ay
Louis Vuitton: Loo-ee Voo-ton
Lucien Pellat-Finet: Lu-see-en Peh-lought Fin-ay
Madame Gres: Madame Gray
Marchesa: Mar-kay-sa
Mainbocher: Maynbo-shay
Missoni: Miss-own-ee
Moschino: Mo-ski-no
Monique Lhullier: Mo-neek Loo-lee-ay
Narciso Rodriguez: Nar-siss-so Ro-dree-gez
Nicolas Ghesquière: Ni-co-la Guess-ki-air
Olivier Theyskens: Oli-vier Tay-skins
Pierre Cardin: Pee-air Car-dain
Proenza Schouler: Pro-enza Skool-er
Ralph Lauren: Ralph Laur-en (like the girl’s name ‘Lauren’, not pronounced like Sophia Lor-en)
Rei Kawakubo: Ray Kah-wah-koo-bo
Rodarte: Ro-dart-tay
Sonia Rykiel: Sonia Ree-kee-eel
Sophia Kokosalaki: So-fee-a Ko-ko-sah-lah-kee
Swarovski: swore-off-ski
Thakoon: Ta-koon
Thierry Mugler: Tee-air-ree Moog-lay
Tibi: Tbi (not Tee-bee)
Tocca: Toe-ka
Tory Burch: Tor-ee Bur-ch (like a birch tree)
Versace: Ver-sawch-eh
Vionnet: Vee-oh-nay
Yves Saint Laurent: Eve-san-Laur-ahnt
Yohji Yamamoto: Yo-jee Ya-ma-mo-to

Have any other designer names to add to this list? How many names were you accidentally mis-pronouncing? I’ll admit that I was guilty of a few!


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  1. Adiel wrote:

    Woah… I was way off with Thierry Mugler!

    Posted 1.14.13 Reply
    • Jennifer wrote:

      Yeah I totally got that one wrong too! Its funny how you hear someone say it one way, and then assume its the right way! LOL


      Posted 1.16.13 Reply
  2. Grace@HauteCouture wrote:

    Oh, this is just perfect! I used to not be able to pronounce some of these designers myself. Great post 🙂


    Posted 1.15.13 Reply
    • Jennifer wrote:

      Glad you enjoyed the post Grace! Everyone has their own opinion on how it should be phonetically spelled but glad this helps!


      Posted 1.16.13 Reply
  3. Bevin wrote:

    Here’s one..I’ve always pronounced Tory Burch so it rhymes with “church” but I recently heard someone in a shop say it so it rhymes with “turk.” Have I been wrong this whole time?


    Posted 1.16.13 Reply
    • Jennifer wrote:

      Hi Bevin!

      Great point! I’ve added Tory Burch to the list. Its pronounced ‘Tor-ee Bur-ch’ not ‘Burk’. But I can see how people would confuse that given that my last name ends in a ‘ch’ and people pronounce it like a ‘k’!


      Posted 1.16.13 Reply
  4. Banx wrote:

    Giuseppe zanotti was one tricky one for me though it’s not on your list. x

    Posted 1.17.13 Reply
  5. Nic wrote:

    Woah! This is a helluva list. I know I’ve gotten a few of these wrong but I’m doing better than I thought. Give me just a little more time though…. I’ll practice and we can “speak” designer 😉


    Posted 1.29.13 Reply