Jan 1, 2012

Molly for Jack Sarnoff

Another now forgotten manufacturer that is somewhat new to us:
Jack Sarnoff
This Seventh Ave. company received a great deal of press coverage across the country in the 50s and 60s.  Founded by Jacob Sarnoff c. 1949 - 1950, this was a family firm that manufactured expensive coats, dresses, and suits. Jacob Sarnoff, who left  I.J. Fox furriers to found his own business in 1946,was the president, his brother Joseph was charge of production, and Joseph’s son Jay was general manager in the 1960s. Jacob Sarnoff  was chairman of the Fashion Center at the NY World’s Fair. Company clients included Doris Day and Pat Nixon, notably Mrs. Nixon’s 1969 daytime Inaugural ensemble in 1969.  The business address in 1967 was 512 7th Ave. 

Molly Sarnoff Levy was the designer and also a partner. She was promoted as Molly for Jack Sarnoff in their publicity. Molly S. Levy retired in 1971. She started designing as early as 1935 and patented a suit in 1945. She designed coats and suits at the firm until she retired in 1971.  According to the Wisconsin State Journal of  March 8, 1953, Molly Levy was “The first woman designer to enter the man tailored coat and suit industry and is now a recognized leader…”

Jacob Sarnoff died in 1965, Molly S. Levey in 1972. There is nothing available on the company after 1971.

c. 1959 Green Wool Suit by Jack Sarnoff, fabric by the French firm  Lesur, 
coming soon to Past Perfect Vintage.com

sources: NY Times, Wisconsin State Journal, Milwaukee Journal, Schenectady Gazette, Miami News, St. Petersburg Times, The Brooklyn Eagle

1 comment:

Lelia said...

I came across a framed print today at an estate sale of a woman in a green dress standing in front of a Jack SARNOFF store. Can't make out the artist, any ideas? L. B something...