The most expensive clothing brands in the world command eye-watering prices.
They attract luxury shoppers seeking access to prestige, quality craftsmanship, and exclusivity that generic clothes simply can’t match.
While not everyone can afford to spend thousands on a designer handbag or ballgown, the top fashion houses like Chanel, Dior, and Hermès remain powerful cultural forces driving runway trends and influencing consumer desire.
Owning an iconic Louis Vuitton monogram bag or Valentino red evening dress represents the pinnacle of fashion for many, even if the prices exist in a different universe than most people’s budgets.
But for the ultra wealthy who can afford it, dropping tens or hundreds of thousands on couture offers entry into an elite circle dripping in glamour.
In our guide, we explore the history, recognizable styles, and stratospheric price points of the 20 most expensive clothing brands that the rich, famous and fashionable clamor for each season.
20 Most Expensive Clothing Brands In The World
1. Louis Vuitton
As one of the most recognizable luxury brands in the world, Louis Vuitton has come to symbolize both fashion-forward style mixed with a heritage stretching back over a century.
Originally founded in 1854 by Louis Vuitton as a luggage and leather goods company, the French fashion house grew to international fame by creating durable, stackable trunks that could withstand transatlantic journeys.
In 1896, Louis Vuitton’s son Georges introduced the iconic LV Monogram canvas pattern, those brown and beige initials that scream luxury.
While travel goods remain a core part of Louis Vuitton’s business, current creative director Nicolas Ghesquière also produces ready-to-wear collections worn by A-list celebrities.
Expect to pay at least $2,000 for a handbag or leather wallet.
Known for its obsessive craftsmanship and ultra-exclusive Birkin bags, Hermès was established as a luxury goods manufacturer in Paris in 1837.
Initially focused on equestrian gear like saddles and harnesses, the French brand expanded into travel trunks and handbags favored by high society women like Grace Kelly.
In addition to leather purses, Hermès is famous for its silk scarves that range from $300 to over $1,000.
There’s also an extensive line of ready-to-wear, shoes, accessories and home goods produced in limited quantities for an ultra-exclusive clientele.
Hermès represents the pinnacle of luxury with prices to match.
Guccio Gucci founded his namesake brand in Florence, Italy in 1921.
Drawing inspiration from the city’s artisan traditions, Gucci established itself as a premium luggage brand with the Bamboo Bag and Horsebit Loafer emerging as early icons.
The double G logo and red-green stripe weave also date back to Gucci’s origins.
Under the stewardship of Tom Ford in the 1990s, Gucci came to define modern luxury with glamorous ready-to-wear, handbags, and accessories beloved by glossy magazine editors and celebrities alike.
These days, Alessandro Michele serves as creative director, modernizing Gucci’s storied heritage. Handbags typically start around $2,000, while shoes retail for $600 and up.
While Balmain was founded back in 1945 by Pierre Balmain, this Parisian label has exploded over the last decade under the direction of Olivier Rousteing.
Bold, heavily embroidered party dresses with strong military and Victorian influences have dominated the runway.
Nicki Minaj, Kim Kardashian and other music/reality stars have fueled the appetite for skin-tight, blinged-out Balmain designs.
With strong branding, Balmain has crafted a new image as a purveyor of young, sexy French glamour – albeit with price tags only the uber-rich can afford.
Between complex embroidery and labor-intensive details, most Balmain dresses easily run $10,000 and up.
Unlike most storied Italian fashion houses, Prada was founded relatively recently in 1913 by Mario Prada.
Initially known for luxury leather luggage and handbags, Prada evolved into a fashion force thanks to Mario’s granddaughter Miuccia Prada, who took over in 1978.
Her clean, minimalist aesthetic attracted the Japanese market first before spreading globally.
Prada is associated with elegant, restrained luxury whether it’s a $2,200 Saffiano leather handbag or a pair of understated $850 leather boots.
Miuccia Prada’s keen eye and refusal to skimp on quality puts the brand in an elite group of luxury goods manufacturers.
Italian designer Gianni Versace founded his eponymous label in 1978, focusing on ready-to-wear, accessories and home furnishings.
From the start, Versace captured the 1980s aesthetic with bold prints, bright colors, sexy cuts and in-your-face branding.
Top models like Naomi Campbell strutted down the runway in barely-there Versace dresses.
Tragically, Gianni was murdered in 1997, leaving his sister Donatella as creative director. She has maintained Versace’s glamorous image while expanding into hotels and other licensing deals.
Today, a new generation wears Versace’s bodycon dresses and Barocco-print shoes, which sell for $1,000 and up per piece.
No luxury brand has fused fashion and aspiration quite like Chanel.
Born in 1883, Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel pioneered women’s sportswear in the 1910s before introducing her iconic tweed jacket suit and Little Black Dress in the 1920s.
She boldly mixed masculine and feminine styles together, letting women move with freedom and wear pants for the first time.
Chanel continues to innovate under the guidance of Virginie Viard who took over after Karl Lagerfeld’s passing.
The French house’s legendary handbags, including the 11.12, Boy Bag, and 2.55 sell for upwards of $4,000 to $6,000 while suits and dresses range from $3,000 to over $20,000 for couture.
Christian Dior established his namesake fashion house in 1946. After years of wartime shortages, Dior’s ultra-feminine New Look dresses with nipped waists and full skirts were revolutionary, ushering a new era of glamour.
Princess Grace of Monaco was a famous early fan of Dior’s elegant creations.
After Dior’s sudden death in 1957, Yves Saint Laurent took over briefly before a string of acclaimed designers like John Galliano, Raf Simmons and Maria Grazia Chiuri left their mark.
Dior is one of the most coveted luxury brands, with handbags starting around $3,000 and couture gowns reaching $100,000.
Cristóbal Balenciaga was one of the great couturiers of the 20th century. Born in Spain in 1895, Balenciaga perfected his craft in San Sebastian, Madrid, and Paris – mentoring Givenchy and Courreges before later designers like Nicolas Ghesquiere.
Revered for his sculptural creations, Balenciaga infused architecture, sculpture and painting into his peerless designs.
Balenciaga thrives under creative director Demna Gvasalia, who has transformed the house into a high fashion streetwear brand coveted by millennials and Gen Z.
Though accessible items like t-shirts sell for a “reasonable” $200 to $700, couture creations soar into the tens of thousands.
10. Dolce & Gabbana
Dolce & Gabbana was founded in 1985 by Italian designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana.
Making a splash in the 1980s with black lingerie-inspired looks, D&G went on to define Italian glamour for the modern age.
While sensual, body-skimming silhouettes remain part of the label’s DNA, D&G also offers refined tailoring and upscale accessories.
Recent years have seen Dolce & Gabbana embrace more ornate, Baroque-inspired themes with liberal use of gold embellishment and Catholic imagery.
No matter the year’s theme, Dolce & Gabbana screams opulence with dresses ranging from $3,000 to $20,000 and shoes starting around $1,000. It’s over-the-top luxe with an Italian flare.
11. Loro Piana
Instead of a ready-to-wear brand, Loro Piana epitomizes luxury materiality.
Founded in 1924 and headquartered in Italy, Loro Piana specialized in creating the world’s finest cashmere using vicuña, baby cashmere, and merino wools.
Vicuña, in particular, comes from an endangered llama-like Andean animal, making it incredibly rare and coveted as a super-soft, delicate fabric.
In 2013, Loro Piana was acquired by LVMH, yet continues to produce its own textiles for discerning luxury brands like Dior and Louis Vuitton.
While not a household name, Loro Piana represents the pinnacle of fabrics thanks to its ethos of uncompromising quality.
A basic cashmere scarf costs around $500, while a vicuña coat can command $10,000 or more for the precious fabric. For those who can feel the difference, Loro Piana is worth every penny.
Valentino was founded in 1960 by the legendary Valentino Garavani and his business partner Giancarlo Giammetti.
Known as the “Maestro of Red,” Valentino became famous for dressing Jackie Kennedy, Elizabeth Taylor and other glamorous women in flowing, feminine gowns.
His signature red evening dresses brought Old Hollywood elegance into the 1960s and beyond.
In 2008, Valentino Garavani retired, leaving successors Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli to carry the brand into the future.
Couture creations can run from $20,000 to upwards of $100,000 for custom-made, red carpet gowns. Beyond eveningwear, Valentino offers luxury bags, shoes and menswear.
13. Ermenegildo Zegna
Switching lanes from women’s fashion to refined menswear, Ermenegildo Zegna was founded in 1910 by Ermenegildo Zegna near Milan.
What started as a textile mill weaving fine wools and fabrics grew into a luxury brand designing suits, sportswear and accessories favored by celebrities, royalty and businessmen willing to pay top dollar for quality.
Under the leadership of Alessandro Sartori, Zegna continues to epitomize hand-tailored Italian excellence for men.
Ready-to-wear suits generally start around $3,000, while custom suits climb far higher. Even men’s t-shirts sell for $300 to $400 in Zegna’s world of sartorial luxury.
Bringing in fur and funk, Fendi has been setting trends since it was established in Rome in 1925 by Adele and Edoardo Fendi.
The sisters hired Karl Lagerfeld in 1965, and he helped catapult Fendi to international fame by pioneering fun furs in bright colors and patterns.
Fendi’s famous double F logo print also symbolizes the brand’s infectious spirit.
These days, under the creative direction of Silvia Venturini Fendi, the brand continues to blend experimentation with Italian craftsmanship.
The iconic Baguette Bag sells for nearly $3,000 while logo-clad shoes, clothing and accessories range from $500 into the thousands.
15. Saint Laurent
Born in Algeria in 1936, Yves Saint Laurent moved to Paris at 18 and soon achieved fame as Christian Dior’s star apprentice before opening his own fashion house.
His first groundbreaking collection for Dior was 1958’s “Beat Look,” which blended tailored menswear with ultra-feminine details.
Saint Laurent continued on that revolutionary path, pioneering pantsuits and safari jackets for women.
After Saint Laurent’s retirement in 2002, subsequent creative directors like Hedi Slimane and Anthony Vaccarello have reimagined Saint Laurent’s iconic styles for new generations.
The brand’s luxury leather jackets, skintight pants, silk blouses, and pumps sell for $2,000 a pop and higher.
Givenchy is another legendary French house that achieved fame dressing Audrey Hepburn and Jackie Kennedy Onassis.
Founded in 1952 by Hubert de Givenchy, the label became synonymous with aristocratic elegance and French refinement.
Subsequent creative directors like John Galliano, Alexander McQueen and Clare Waight Keller have added edgy twists while upholding Givenchy’s reputation for peerless couture.
Under current designer Matthew Williams, Givenchy juxtaposes Parisian elegance with urban streetwear touches.
Today, shoppers can get a small taste of Givenchy with a $300 graphic t-shirt while couture gowns climb well into the tens of thousands due to their meticulous construction.
17. Oscar de la Renta
Oscar de la Renta stands for America’s version of big, exuberant, red carpet glamour.
Born in the Dominican Republic in 1932, de la Renta dressed several First Ladies before becoming famous for his lavishly embroidered evening gowns favoring vibrant hues.
Even into his 80s, Oscar continued creating collections before passing away in 2014.
Under creative directors like Laura Kim and Fernando Garcia, Oscar de la Renta carries on as the go-to label for fairy tale dresses and party looks.
At the top end, custom couture creations easily exceed $100,000 in price for special occasions. But even ready-to-wear evening gowns generally hover around $5,000 and up.
British label Burberry has a long legacy starting with its founding in 1856, but remains relevant today thanks to its iconic trench coats and novacheck print.
Thomas Burberry, the founder, pioneered weatherproof gabardine fabric used for trench coats supplied to British officers in WWI.
The lined check pattern also emerged early on as part of Burberry’s identity.
Now under the helm of Riccardo Tisci, Burberry is reimagining its heritage for a younger audience with fresh iterations on classic pieces.
Of course, the classic Heritage Trench Coat still sells for nearly $2,000 in most markets. But Burberry’s seasonal collections offer new variations on the brand’s luxe, refined British style.
19. Giorgio Armani
Italian designer Giorgio Armani, established his namesake brand in 1975 after cutting his teeth at Nino Cerruti.
Armani became famous for relaxed yet refined suits that deemphasized formality through natural shapes and neutral hues.
He also revolutionized red carpet dressing via fluid trousers and jackets.
While Armani’s many sub-labels cater to various audiences, the Giorgio Armani Privé couture line remains the pinnacle of precision Italian tailoring.
For ready-to-wear, a men’s suit costs around $3,000 while Armani Privé couture gowns run well into the tens of thousands. Regardless of the label, Armani equals sophisticated luxury.
20. Brunello Cucinelli
Rounding out our list is the Italian luxury brand Brunello Cucinelli, founded in 1978 by the designer of the same name.
Based out of the medieval hamlet of Solomeo in Umbria, Brunello Cucinelli specializes in sumptuous cashmere and fine knitwear for men and women.
While relatively young compared to other heritage brands, Brunello Cucinelli has carved out a niche as “the king of cashmere” through his devotion to craftsmanship and understated chic.
Neutral, earthy tones define the palette while silhouettes skim the body comfortably. Between the quality fabrics and artisanal construction, expect to pay around $2,000 for a cashmere sweatshirt or sweater.
For those who appreciate comfort and softness, Brunello Cucinelli delivers a touch of la dolce vita luxury.