Our state also dealt with fashion in the 1950’s and in 1956 it opened an unexpected Shopping Centre that focussed on the new ideology of “Clothing for a Czechoslovak Citizen”. People have wanted to look good in every century and therefore this desire is generationally transferrable. That’s why the State anticipated so much from the opening of a new sales space. It was seeking to present Czech clothing, textiles and the footwear industry. It wanted to give people the opportunity to “enjoy” dressing themselves up luxuriously.
The House of Fashion opened in a very luxurious and lucrative location: i.e. in the upper part of Wenceslas Square. Nowadays it bares the design of Josef Hrubý, the leading Czech architect who, together with Josef Kittrich, was the instigator of another important building – i.e. the well-known Bílá labuť. J. Hrubý, for the presentation of the most luxurious products in Czechoslovakia, created a neoclassical building that was enriched with functionalist elements.
At the opening on the 8th July 1956 the first visitors and the impatient buyers were able to view a plethora of clothing, including lingerie, footwear, knitwear and haberdashery. Their clothing and their shoemaker work were offered by such leading companies as Modeta, Vlněna and Oděvní závody Prostějov, with shoes produced by Svit Gottwaldov and other shoemakers.
Advance projects also included fashion shows offering viewing models that had not yet been included in the collection. In this manner the audience’s responses to the designs and the materials of the clothes were monitored and thereby the House of Fashion could also become a Showroom. It is not surprising that the designer’s arts were presented there by the tailor’s salons of such eminent names as Eva (Hanna Podolská) and Adam (Kníže Salon).
The exterior of the building has remained the same, only its content has been upgraded. The six floors feature the luxurious German, Italian, French and Czech brands (the revival of the First Republic Salon, Jablonex, etc.). Just below the roof, at the top, there is the administrative part of the building that includes offices that are primarily connected with the operation of the building. In addition, there is a tailor’s salon and for the pleasure of body and soul there is still the Café, just as it was in the old days.