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Creator of unisex fashions dies

Syrian model in a Ted Lapidus dress, 5 Sep 04
Ted Lapidus made his fashions accessible for ordinary people

French fashion designer Ted Lapidus, who pioneered the unisex look and safari suit in the 1960s, has died from leukemia, aged 79.

Edmond Lapidus, known as Ted, was the son of a Russian immigrant tailor. He opened his fashion house in 1958.

French film stars Brigitte Bardot and Alain Delon were among the celebrities who popularised his fashions. Military epaulettes were also a Lapidus feature.

His son Olivier Lapidus now runs the label, which includes many accessories.

France's President Nicolas Sarkozy said Ted Lapidus had "democratised French elegance", calling him "the poet of high fashion".

Lapidus died on Monday at a hospital in Cannes, in the south of France.

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