Cristóbal Balenciaga began selling his designs in Spain in 1919. He later opened up a shop in Paris on Avenue George V in 1937, after fleeing the Spanish Civil War. The designer was renowned for his sublimely feminine designs, soft lines and voluminous silhouettes. In 1958, he created the babydoll dress, which has been celebrated in various incarnations ever since. Today Balenciaga is a major French fashion house and celebrated luxury brand that produces women's and men's ready-to-wear clothing, handbags, shoes, accessories and eyewear. The moto-inspired Balenciaga City Bag, is one of its most popular current handbags.