PARIS (AFP) – Hungarian fashion designer Catherine de Karolyi, who created the first women’s ready to wear collection for French luxury goods group Hermes International in 1967, died on October 30 at the age of 87, her family announced.
The only daughter of the Hungarian painter Tibor Polya and the wife of Count Etienne Karolyi, she left Hungary after the communists came to power to live in Paris where she worked as a model.
She then became a designer for Robert Piguet’s fashion house, moving after he died to design for Jacques Fath and Christian Dior. She then opened her own fashion house under the label “Catherine de Karolyi”.
In 1967 she designed Hermes’ first ready to wear collection and until 1980 made accessories, including bags and belts, including the well-known H Buckle.
The second wife of the cinema producer Raymond Assayas, otherwise known as Jacques Remy, De Karolyi had three sons, including cinema producer Olivier Assayas and the journalist and writer Michka Assayas.