Impressed by the 1937 World's Fair in Paris, young Givenchy decided he wanted to work "somewhere in fashion design". He did designs for Robert Piguet and Lucien Lelong (1946) — working alongside the still-unknown Pierre Balmain and Christian Dior. From 1947 to 1951 he worked for the avant-garde designer Elsa Schiaparelli.
As early as 1957, though, Givenchy was already creating fragrances – a woman’s ‘finishing touch’, when getting dressed. In 1958 – at a time when perfumes didn’t have ‘faces’ – he created a revolution by asking his friend Audrey Hepburn to be the star of the advertising campaign for L’Interdit: the very first time that a movie star had appeared in a perfume advertisement.