The world's biggest couture buyer talks about her life

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MEET MOUNA AYOUB: THE REAL-LIFE CINDERELLA WHO’S BECOME THE WORLD’S BIGGEST COUTURE BUYER
Mouna Ayoub is often described as “the queen of couture.”
The billionaire divorcee’s claim to fame is owning the world’s largest collection of haute couture, a 1,600 piece wardrobe in which each piece costs between 50,000 and 290,000 euros ($70,000 – $400,000).
With so many dresses, it’s perhaps unsurprising that she frequently runs out of space in her home in Monaco, so has invested in an another apartment just for her couture.
But much of the collection goes unworn.
“I never wear the same dress twice, because I get photographed a lot,” she reveals.
“It happens to me that when I have a photo shoot and I wear the dress for a photo shoot, that I wear it for another occasion, but that’s about it. It didn’t happen much. Maybe twice.”
The Lebanese socialite is perhaps the best-known member of an uber-elite group of super rich women who keep haute couture alive – the 150-year-old Parisian tradition of making astronomically-priced, made-to-measure gowns.
Each couture house, from Chanel to Jean Paul Gaultier via Christian Dior, has their very own Mouna mannequin that they can tailor the clothes to when she is not available for a fitting.
“Every couture house must have my mannequin as they should have the mannequin of every couture client and I have to tell you that this mannequin changes sizes as often as a couture client gains weight or loses weight, so they have to stuff it with things and un-stuff it with things. Yes, of course you should have your mannequin,” she smiles.
Her wardrobe alone may be enough to bankroll a small country but she doesn’t always go for glamor when deciding what to wear.
“When I have to go out to special occasions, to dinners, I always wear couture, but when I have to go shopping or doing errands, I wear a pair of jeans and a sweater and a coat if it’s winter or a T-shirt if it’s summer,” she reveals.
The couture diva is currently working hard to prepare an auction of the sparkling sea-themed contents of her old yacht, the Phocea.
In a warehouse outside Paris are trinkets that lined the inside of what was, until 2004, the largest sailing yacht in the world, that she refurbished for $17 million.
The 56-year-old has friends in high places. Her good friend King Carlos of Spain was a frequent sleep-over visitor on the vessel.
“(He) came many, many times, because even when he was doing the maxi cup, he didn’t like to sleep anywhere else, he preferred to come to Phocea because it was very comfortable,” she recalls.
“And I can name of course Prince Albert because he was a very close, close friend.”
Ayoub’s is a living fairy tale rags-to-riches story, a beautiful but impoverished waitress in Paris who was swept off her feet by a billionaire adviser to the Saudi king.
She now wears couture every time she has a public engagement before stashing the gown away in a sleepy French village to be preserved forever.
“I keep them in specially made boxes for museums,” she explains.
“They are all laying down, even if they weigh as feathers, you know, like muslin dresses which Karl (Lagerfeld) used to do in the 80s. I have to have them what we call ‘manuquine,’ which means the dress is laid down in a box and filled with very special paper, anti-moth, and it’s dressed as a person with those papers, so the dress never loses its shape. So when you take it out, you hang it, it’s exactly like it was delivered.”
But even this Lebanese Cinderella has moments when reality bites.
When the captain throttled up suddenly, the lifeboat capsized and she was thrown into the chilly waters. Fortunately, she saw her jewel-filled bag floating meters away and she was able to glide over and fetch it.

You can license this story through AP Archive: http://www.aparchive.com/metadata/youtube/d59e38179a866853e1a96f5e9a1027f7
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Comments

N3MOtube says:

Catelyn is getting hotter

Gabriela 111 says:

Only royalty are worthy of having candles in their rooms. LOL. This from a $500,000.000 fortune person. The richer the stingier.

softwater88 says:

Didn't Betsy Blooomingdale try to launch her in Los Angeles as a socialite?

And it didn't work.

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Elainel Blais says:

Are you kidding me? Who the hell cares about this old witch ? Children are in cages and dying in refugee camps and this is what you're talking about? Are you nuts?

radicalaccounting says:

Love what she's wearing. So pretty!

mefreee2 says:

Is this even a woman? Looks like a dude in drag to me or Steven Tyler clone

Eduardo B. says:

Her medical team is world class for sure. She looks amazing. If it wasn't for the slightly slurred speech, it would be near impossible to discern her age.

Aunt Bee says:

Facial structure screams dude!

Julian Coulden says:

She spends her money as she pleases. And provides work and jobs for a lot of people. Keeping skills and huge talents alive and flourishing. The world would be a much poorer place without this lady and people like her.

Sebastian Stolz says:

Looks like a tranny

Targeted Empath says:

Comic collections r better

Awesome Welles says:

I thought she was Caitlyn Jenner

Alejandro Uset says:

She looks like steven Tyler but sounds like done tells versace lol 😅

Angela Pritchard says:

I saw her yacht in Monte Carlo Harbor. It's stunning! She's an Arab divorce'. I don't know if she ever remarried.

Kelly Marie says:

I can’t imagine being so obsessed with material things. We were made for more than this.

A Rarefind says:

I think you've over dosed.! Time to do something else besides buy clothes… Why don't you rescue the animals in Africa? That's a better humane thing to do with that money

MidnightMan says:

The last of the Haute Couture Unicorns ..

applejuice76 says:

She is on so many quaalude’s 😂

Ms D says:

Must be nice.

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