Daniel Hechter (born 30 July 1938) is a French fashion designer, sometimes referred to as the inventor of Pret-a-Porter or ready-to-wear.
Hechter was born in Paris, France, into a Jewish family who owned a ready-to-wear company. As such, Hechter was brought up in an environment sympathetic to fashion. At the age of four, he was forced to flee the capital with his mother and did not see his father, a prisoner of war, until he was seven. He married Marika Hechter; then married Jennifer Chambon in 1980. They have a daughter, Carinne. He served in the French Army from 1958-60.
He completed his secondary education and worked as a storekeeper to a fashion house until 1955. By 1956, Louis Féraud and Jacques Esterel were selling Hechter's designs, and he worked for designer Pierre d'Alby from 1958. Hechter founded the Daniel Hechter Company in 1962 with friend Armand Orustein. His stated goal was to offer wearable yet high-quality, creative fashion for a wide range of consumer groups. Over time he expanded his company, developing it into an international label that encompasses seven different collections. Brigitte Bardot helped bring his designs to a wider audience when she wore one of his outfits in La Parisienne.
He is one of the first designers to produce clothing ranges for skiing and tennis, in 1971.
In 1989, he launched his first line of perfume.
He entered politics and sat on the Marseilles regional council starting in 1992.
In 1997, he retired to Geneva, Switzerland, and he was elected Vice President of the Etoile-Carouge soccer club. His novel Le Boss was published in 2000.