Apr 17, 2012

Bits and Bobs

A Fantastic exhibit and a wonderful online resource: 

"In 1860, Englishman Charles Frederick Worth (1825-1895) founded a Parisian atelier that defined the luxurious standards of the haute couture and set high fashions stylistic course for the balance of the 19th century. Almost seven decades years later, Chicago-born Mainbocher (Main Rousseau Bocher, 1891-1976) perfected those standards while designing in Paris and later transported his Parisian-based skills across the Atlantic to New York. In so doing he modernized the language of the couture, streamlining it to suit the lifestyle of the socially prominent 20th century New York woman.

We invite you to view 119 stellar garments produced by these two designers garments owned and worn by fashionable New York women and now in the care of the Costume and Textile Collection of the Museum of the City of New York and to explore them from the outside-in. This web presentation combines comprehensive catalogue entries with social histories and also provides detailed technical observations on the details of their construction and internal finishing techniques. Through this close reading and analysis, we hope to demystify some of the apparent wizardry of the Houses of Worth and Mainbocher, and to shed light on the genius of their art and craft."

And I don't have a Worth on file, but here are two of the Mainbochers we have been delighted to handle:

 c. 1955 Silk Suit and c. 1955 Striped Gazar Dress both from an Indiana estate, 
and attributed to Mrs. E.F. Hutton
from the Past Perfect Vintage Archives

And, coming April 27th and 28th, Charles A. Whitaker Auction Co. will hold their semi annual auction of fine vintage clothing and textiles. There are some beauties. Many years ago, I was privileged to inventory one of the collections now being offered. Let me say, there will be some beautiful things in New Hope this April. Here's one of the dresses I saw those many year ago:


"PRINTED SATIN TRAINED HIGH NECK AFTERNOON GOWN, c. 1902. 2-piece black dotted sapphire blue silk with white paisleys of varying sizes having black and blue dots, boned bodice trimmed in black embroidered net with sequins and bowknot appliques on sleeve"

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