Hanae Mori is the only Asian designer to be accepted as a member of La Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne.
Hanae Mori studied Japanese Literature at Tokyo Woman's Christian College. After her marriage, she started studying design, and in 1951 opened her first studio in Tokyo. Soon she became involved in the growing post-war movie industry and designed costumes for more than hundred films.
In 1965 she presented her first Collection abroad in New York, which was highly acclaimed as "East meets West". Prestigious stores such as Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman and I.Magnin recognized the individuality of her design and orderd her dresses. In 1975, she presented her Collection in Paris, where in 1977 she opened her Haute Couture Maison.
Among Madame Mori's achievements include costume designs for the opera "Madame Butterfly" at La Scala in Milan in 1985, and for "Elektra" at 1996 Salzburg Festival. She also designed the costumes for Paris Opera Ballet's "Cinderella", directed by Rudolf Nureyev in 1986.
In addition to her success as an internationally renown fashion designer, Hanae Mori is well recognized as a pioneer of Japanese working women, and serves on many governmental committees as an advisor.
She was nemed a "Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur" in France, and in 1996 received the "Order of Culture" in Japan.