Ferré began his fashion career in 1970 by designing accessories, then worked as a raincoat designer from 1972-74. He started his own company Baila in 1974, and launched his signature collection for women in 1978. His first men's collection appeared in 1982, followed in 1986 by his first couture collection in Rome. Ferré became the Stylistic Director of Christian Dior in Paris in 1989, when he was chosen by owner Bernard Arnault to replace Marc Bohan. In 1996, it was announced that Ferré would end his engagement with Dior with the Spring 1997 collection for the label.
His own label is more relaxed and pared-down than Dior. Sophisticated white shirts have become the symbol of his personal signature in fashion design.