Tag Archives: 1920s couture

A One-Trunk Vacation Wardrobe Designed in Paris, March 1927

Delineato magazine cover, March 1927. Illustration by Helen Dryden.

Delineator magazine cover, March 1927. Illustration by Helen Dryden.

By February or March, those who could afford to take a break from winter weather — and those who just wanted to daydream about doing it — could read about resort wear.
In a two page spread, Delineator assured readers that all these authorized copies of French designer fashions would fit into just one trunk.

Informal coat by Paquin, Delineator. March 1927, p. 18.

Informal coat by Paquin, Delineator. March 1927, p. 18. The mole collar is dyed green to match the cloth coat; the hat is by Reboux.

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Sporty day outfits combine a sweater and pleated skirt. Delineator, March 1927.

Sporty day outfits combine a skirt and lacy sweater, left,  or a printed silk “jumper” and coordinating skirt by Goupy, right. Delineator, March 1927. These imported fashions could be purchased in New York stores.

A bathing suit and beach robe by Lelong. Delineator, March 1927.

A bathing suit and beach robe by Lelong. Delineator, March 1927. The ingeniously cut wrap reverses from jersey to toweling. The bathing suit is cut low in back to produce a tan the same shape as an equally low cut evening dress.

For more about the fad for suntans in the 1920’s, click here. For more about composé colors, click here.

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A more formal dress and matching coat ensemble designed by Berthe are worn in the late afternoon. Delineator, March 1927.

A more formal afternoon dress and matching coat ensemble designed by Berthe are worn in the late afternoon. Delineator, March 1927. The matching mauve coat is 7/8 length. The straw hat by Agnes (left) “has the new front-peak silhouette.”

The somewhat similar draped hat on the magazine’s cover, illustrated by Helen Dryden, shows a “peak” that is pinned up, away from the face.

A rose colored outfit is accented with emeral jewelry in this stylized image by Helen Dryden. March 1927.

A rose colored outfit (or is it mauve?) is accented with emerald jewelry in this stylized image by Helen Dryden. March 1927.

A gold lame evening wrap by Vionnet is show with a "bolero" dress by Chanel. Delineator, March 1927, p. 19.

A gold lamé evening wrap by Vionnet, “striped with silver” and trimmed with gold fox fur, is shown with a “bolero” dress by Chanel in white Georgette trimmed with jewels and silver. Delineator, March 1927. page 19.

An evening dress made of lace. Delineator, March 1927.

An evening dress made of lace. “Rose silk lines the fur bows.” The tiers of the skirt “extend all the way to the shoulder in back.” Delineator, March 1927. No designer was named.

The Chanel evening dress was imported by Lord and Taylor; the other French afternoon and evening clothes were available from John Wanamaker.

Fashion Illustrator Myrtle Lages

The illustrations from pages 18 and 19 are by Myrtle Lages. Here are some Lages signatures, which usually appeared subtly at a lower corner of the image. I had to enhance some of these to improve legibility.

Lages (Myrtle Lages) worked as a fashion illustrator for Delineator, which often used one illustrator for an entire article. Lages usually squeezed her signature modestly into the lower corner of one illustration (probably magazine policy.)

Lages (Myrtle Lages) worked as a fashion illustrator for Delineator, which often used one illustrator for most of the pattern illustrations in an issue. Lages usually squeezed her signature modestly into the lower corner of one illustration (probably magazine policy.) Delineator magazine was owned by Butterick.

Lages’ signature varied between the faint and stylized vertical one, giving last name only, to the carefully written full name, as in September 1933. When Delineator switched to black and white line illustrations plus one color, Lages had no problem adjusting her style.

Butterick patterns 1419 and 1417, illustrated in red, black and white by Delineator, May 1927.

Butterick patterns 1419 and 1417, illustrated in red, black and white by Lages for Delineator, May 1927.

Lages pattern illustration, Delineator, August 1927. Butterick 1555, 1589, 1573, 1384.

Myrtle Lages pattern illustrations, Delineator, August 1927. Butterick 1555, 1589, 1573, 1384.

According to her obituary, Myrtle Lages (married name Whitehill) worked as an illustrator for Butterick for more than forty years. A graduate of Parsons School of Design, she died in 1994, aged 98.

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Filed under 1920s, Bathing Suits, Hats, lingerie and underwear, Swimsuits, Vintage Couture Designs

Fashion Plates (for Men and Women) from the Met Costume Institute

1921 fashion plate from the Metropolitan Museum collection. Click here to see it in larger versions.

1921 fashion plate from the Metropolitan Museum collection. Click here to see it in larger versions.

The Metropolitan Museum continues its generous policy of sharing images online; “Fashion plates from the collections of the Costume Institute and the Irene Lewisohn Costume Reference Library at The Metropolitan Museum of Art” are now available (and searchable) at http://libmma.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/landingpage/collection/p15324coll12

Click here, and scroll down for a lengthy list of sub-collections of fashion plates: menswear, children, wedding, women, headgear, etc., organized by date or range of dates.

What really excited me is the large number of men’s fashion plates, many dated very precisely, like these tennis outfits from 1905-06.

Men's tennis outfits, 1905 1906; Metropolitan Museum Fashion Plates collection. Plate 029.

Men’s tennis outfits, 1905-1906; Metropolitan Museum Fashion Plates Collection. Plate 029. For full image, click here.

If you need to skim through a year or a decade of men’s fashion, this is a great place! It’s also going to be very helpful to collectors who are trying to date specific items of men’s clothing. Sometimes the date range given is very narrow (e.g., 1905-06) and sometimes it’s rather broad (e.g., 1896 to 1913) but menswear is neglected by many costume collections, so this is a terrific resource.

Vintage vests for men. Undated. Details like the lapels, the shape of the waist, the depth of the opening, the buttons, etc., will help to date them from reference materials

Vintage evening vests for men. Undated. Details like the lapels, the shape of the waist, the depth of the opening, the buttons, etc., will help the collector to date them from reference materials.

In addition to full outfits, like these evening clothes …

Evening dress for men, 1909-1910. Met Museum Costume Plate.

Evening dress for men, 1909-1910. Met Museum Costume Plate.

… individual items like vests can also be found:

Men's vests; fashion plate from the Met Museum fashion plate collection category "1900-1919 men"

Men’s vests; fashion plate from the Met Museum fashion plate collection category “1900-1919 men.” The vests on the left have five buttons.

Undated vintage vests. Both have high necklines, but one has seven buttons instead of six.

Undated vintage vests. Both have high necklines, but one has seven buttons and one has six. You could probably date them from the Met’s Fashion Plate Collection.

Men's vests 1896 to 1899. The red one reminds us that vests (aka weskits) sometimes had sleeves.

From “Men 1896 to 1899.” The red one reminds us that vests (aka weskits) sometimes had sleeves. The red one with vertical stripes may be a footman’s or other servant’s vest. This plate is dated February 1898.

Of course, fashion plates that have been separated from their descriptions in text are less useful than a complete magazine or catalog. Nevertheless, I’m grateful for the chance to see these rare collections, especially because the men are not forgotten.

This delightful plate reminds me of an Edward Gorey vamp — like the ones dancing through the credits on Mystery on Public Television.

A long evening gown from the House of Worth, 1921. Met Museum Costume Collection Fashion Plate.

A long evening gown from the House of Worth, 1921. Met Museum Costume Institute Fashion Plate.

I’ll add a link to the collection to my “Sites with Great Information” sidebar. (There are other treasures to explore there….)

 

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Filed under 1700s, 1800s-1830s, 1830s -1860s fashions, 1860s -1870s fashions, 1870s to 1900s fashions, 1900s to 1920s, 1920s, 1930s, Children's Vintage styles, Costumes for the 18th Century, Costumes for the 19th century, Early Victorian fashions, Exhibitions & Museums, Late Victorian fashions, Men's Formalwear & Evening, Men's Sportswear, Menswear, Mid-Victorian fashions, Resources for Costumers, Suits for Men, Vintage Couture Designs, Vintage Garments: The Real Thing, Wedding Clothes

Composé Dresses with Color Gradation, circa 1927

Graded colors in an ad for McCallum service hosiery, April 1927, Delineator. Notice the graded colors in the leaves (green), the flower (violet) and the dress (rusty-reds.)

Graded colors in a stylized ad for McCallum service hosiery, April 1927, Delineator. Notice the graded colors in the leaves (from dark olive to light olive to pale gray-green or white), the flower (from white to lavender to violet) and the dress (three degrees of rusty-reds.) [Yes, this is an ad for stockings to wear while gardening!]

I love the geometric flavor of 1920’s dresses, and this group of Butterick pattern illustrations is a sampling of late nineteen-twenties’ styles that combine geometry with graded colors. Dresses of two or more colors were called “composé” with an accent mark on the “e” [kom-poh-zay.]

Butterick patterns from Delineator, March 1927.

Butterick patterns from Delineator, March 1927.

Although most of the illustrations are in black, gray, and white, try to imagine these dresses in colors:   a dark, a middle, and a light version of the same hue, e.g,  espresso brown + coffee with cream + cafe au lait; or deep blue-green + teal, + pale aqua,  etc.

Women were encouraged to think of “blue, from baby to navy, with the many off shades which steal a tinge from the Mediterranean sky, the changing ocean or the twilight tints. These easily merge into orchid, with its overtones of lavender, mauve, and purple.  Sports clothes are often flushed with rose, including every possible variation from flesh to wine, rosy beige to rust, pale cyclamen to dahlia red. Another important color range is based on yellow and brown. And white, always, only more so, alone, with black, or linked to some more lively shade.” — “The French Riviera Mode,” in Delineator, Feb. 1927, pg. 14.

Butterick pattern 6612, Feb. 1926, Delineator.

Butterick pattern 6612, Feb. 1926, Delineator. A range of blues in one dress, from midnight blue to twilight.

Many of these composé dress patterns were in the March 1927 issue of Delineator. They show a nice range of skirt designs, with single or double pleats for movement placed differently in each pattern. The device we call a “kick pleat” in back was not used.

Butterick patterns 1282 and 1298, Delineator, Feb. 1927. Pg. 23.

Butterick patterns 1282, a three-toned dress,  and 1298, Delineator, Feb. 1927. Pg. 23. The two-color suit dress would count as compose.

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Butterick 1238 and 1280. February 1927, Delineator pg. 25.

Butterick 1238 and 1280. February 1927, Delineator, pg. 25. The graded sleeves match the skirt flounces.

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Butterick 1309 and 1325, March 1927, Delineator.

Butterick patterns 1309 and 1325, March 1927, Delineator. Try to imagine colors, rather than grays. This compose dress combines traditional feminine touches like ruching and a sheer jabot with a square neckline and horizontal color blocks.

1325-text1927-mar-p-24-graded-1309-1325-top

Butterick 1329 and 1317, March 1927, pg. 25. Delineator.

Butterick 1329 and 1317, March 1927, pg. 25. Delineator. No. 1329 has repetitive, geometric art deco or style moderne shapes,echoed  in the cuffs.

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I don’t know who the “famous Paris couturier was,” but the Delineator showed that several designers got on the graded color bandwagon:

A dress by Jane Regny, illustrated in Delineator, April 1928. pg. 37.

A Paris design by Jane Regny, illustrated in Delineator, April 1928, pg. 37.

This Paris dress by Premet used a range or related shades of coral -- and the fur was dyed coral, too. Delineator, November 1927, pg. 21.

This designer dress by Premet used a range of related shades of reds from “deep strawberry, rose, coral, and pale pink” on pink crepe — and the fox fur was dyed pink, too. Delineator, November 1927, pg. 21.

Sometimes the graded colors were used more subtly, or as accents, as in this elegant two-piece sports dress by Lucien Lelong:

The dress is trimmed with graded bands of blue -- and there may be flashes of color in the pleats of the skirt, too. Restort wear by designer Lucien Lelong, illustrated in Delineator, January 1928, pg. 32.

The dress is trimmed with graded bands of blue — and there may be flashes of color inside the pleats of the skirt, too. Resort wear by designer Lucien Lelong, illustrated in Delineator, January 1928, pg. 32. It’s hard to tell whether the dress itself was white or very pale blue.

This dress is not, strictly, composé, since the colors are only trim.

This Butterick dress uses three colors, but they may not be three values of the same hue. Pattern 1761, December 1927, Delineator.

This Butterick dress uses three colors, but they may not be three values of the same hue. Pattern 1761, December 1927, Delineator. It could be white with two shades of green, or with jade green and black, or two shades of blue, or red, white and blue…. Quite a jaunty design — just right for Jordan Baker in The Great Gatsby.

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Although not really color blocked, this dress uses three shades, with red-brown as the darkest, fading through rosewood to a muted coral.

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However, it doesn’t have the dynamic repetition of shapes seen in these two composé dresses from Butterick:

Butterick patterns from March 1927; both dresses are suitable for tens, but the dress on the right is also offered in women's sizes.

Butterick patterns from March 1927; both dresses are recommended for teens, but the dress on the right is also offered in women’s sizes 38 to 44 inches. I found them on the same page. (Is No. 1308 really in bleu, blanc et rouge, like the French flag? It looks more subtle.)

text-1927-mar-p-27-girls-teens-graded-1321-scallopedtext-500-1927-mar-p-27-girls-teens-graded-1308

They may have graded colors in common, but what a difference in styles!

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Filed under 1920s, Hosiery, Old Advertisements & Popular Culture, Sportswear, Vintage Couture Designs, Vintage patterns

Paris Designer Gowns Illustrated by J. Desvignes, 1926

Gowns by Chanel and Patou. Delineator magazine, November 1926.

Gowns by Chanel and Patou. Delineator magazine, November 1926.

There’s nothing about these four Paris evening gowns from 1926 that could be called “everyday fashion.” These are couture, with all the detailing we expect at top prices. The designers are Chanel, Patou, and Doeuillet.

Embroidered "Chinoiserie" gown by Doueillet, and a beaded gown by Patou. Delineator, November 1926.

Embroidered “Chinoiserie” gown by Doeuillet, and a beaded gown by Patou. Delineator, November 1926.

The illustrations are signed “J. Desvignes.” They were originally printed at large scale, longer than most horizontal computer screens, so I’ll be breaking the illustrations down to show the details. They were featured in Delineator magazine in November, 1926, and were available in New York from Frances Clyne — just in time for the holiday season.

A Chanel Evening Gown, November 1926

Left, an evening gown by Chanel, illustrated in November 1926 by J. Desvignes. Delineator, Nov. 1926, page 40.

Left, a red chiffon evening gown by Chanel, illustrated in November 1926 by J. Desvignes. Delineator, Nov. 1926, page 40.

1926 nov p 40 designer Chanel text fond of redt

“Chanel uses red chiffon for this delightful dress which promises to be the frock of the season. It is simple in effect but attains interest by means of its drooping blouse, an intricate girdle, outlined by beads and floating draperies. Chanel’s skirts are longer — in spots — but in general short. Chanel is fond of red for evening.”

Details of Chanel's beaded red chiffon evening dress, 1926. Delineator.

Details of Chanel’s beaded red chiffon evening dress, 1926. Delineator.

It mixes fluid chiffon panels with geometric beading in an Art Deco rhythm. Even the narrow straps are beaded.

A Beaded Evening Gown by Patou, 1926

Beaded evening gown by Patou, illulstated by J. Desvignes, Delineator, Nov. 1926, p 40.

Beaded white evening gown by Patou, illustrated by J. Desvignes, Delineator, Nov. 1926, p 40. “All frost and fire.” I have darkened it to show the beading.

1926 nov p 40 designerPatou right U bodice is new Frances clyne text

“This slender frock of white crepe Roma, all frost and fire with its rhinestones and pearls, was designed by Patou. A faint suggestion of the bolero is cleverly introduced at the waistline. The beaded frock remains faithful to the sheath, giving it a fresh look with tiers and scallops. The U outline of the decolletage is new.”

A “bolero” was any over layer that floated free above the dropped waist. This whole description is interesting to me because it mentions the “sheath,” and because this deep, filled-in U-shape on the bodice is described as “new” in 1926. With hindsight, it’s one of the archetypal 1920s’ evening looks.

A tiered, beaded, rhinestone trimmed evening gown by Patou; Delineator, Nov. 1926.

A white, tiered, beaded, rhinestone-trimmed evening gown by Patou; Delineator, Nov. 1926. The deep U shape on the bodice is “new.” What looks like a long necklace is part of the dress.

Later, Paquin did a series of “necklace dresses,” with beading eliminating the need for jewelry.

A Black Satin Doeuillet Evening Dress, Beaded and Embroidered, from 1926

Left, a black satin gown by Doeuillet; right, a black and white beaded Patou. Ilustrated for Delineator by Desvignes, Nov. 1926, p. 41.

Left, a black satin gown by Doeuillet; right, a black and white beaded Patou. Illustrated for Delineator by Desvignes, Nov. 1926, p. 41.

500 doeuillet text1926 nov p 41 designer Doeuillet left text beaded chinese

“The Chinese influence is apparent in this Doeuillet frock of black satin. It is called “Pagoda,” a name suggested by the pointed hemline, flaring tiers and amusing Chinese motifs in red, blue, and silver beads. Much embroidery worked in silk and metal threads mixed with beads is used for evening.”

Black satin gown with red, blue, and silver embroidery by Doeuillet. Delineator, Nov. 1926.

Details of black satin gown with red, blue, and silver embroidery by Doeuillet. Delineator, Nov. 1926.

Doeuillet was an established couture house in Paris, founded in 1900 and successful in the 1910’s as well as the 1920’s.

A Patou Evening Gown in Black and White, 1926

Black and White evening gown by Jean Patou, illustrated by Desvignes for Delineator, Nov. 1926.

Black and White evening gown by Jean Patou, illustrated by Desvignes for Delineator, Nov. 1926.

500 patou black white text 1926 nov p 41 designer Patou rt evening beaded black and white

“Patou’s frock “Half-and-Half” of black and white Elizabeth crepe relieves its stark simplicity by rhinestones and pearl embroidery. A jabot drapery at the front and a floating panel from the left shoulder add distinction to the silhouette and convey a sense of motion. Models on these two pages imported by Frances Clyne.”

The filled-in neckline of this Patou dress is V shaped, rather than U shaped.

Detail of Black and white, pearl and rhinestone Patou evening dress. Delineator, Nov. 1926.

Detail of Black and white, pearl and rhinestone Patou evening dress. Delineator, Nov. 1926. I have darkened the photo to show the beading pattern.

The name of Patou has long been associated with his sportswear, but the two gowns illustrated here show that he knew how to produce luxe in a context of simplicity. These gowns look un-fussy but still very expensive — they possess a tailored version of glamour and sophistication, as sleek as the models’ hair.

Both Chanel and Patou remained well-known names in the twentieth century because of their best-selling fragrances:  “Chanel No. 5” and “Joy,” respectively.

Frances Clyne, like Hattie Carnegie and some high end department stores, worked with French designers to sell exact copies of their clothes in the United States. They cost twice as much as they did in Paris, but there were no import duties to pay, no wait to clear customs, and clients didn’t have to take a ship to Paris and remain there for fittings, a process which, including travel time, took several weeks.

 

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Filed under 1920s, Hairstyles, Vintage Accessories, Vintage Couture Designs

Caught in the Twenties

Cover of Delineator magazine, September 1928. Illustration by Helen Dryden.

Cover of Delineator magazine, September 1928. Illustration by Helen Dryden.

Caught isn’t the right word; “enraptured” might be more accurate. I finally have a chance to visit bound volumes from the mid-nineteen twenties and photograph them, and I wish I could post everything I find. By 1928, Delineator magazine is filled with the styles we think of as “the twenties.”

Butterick patterns for January 1928. Delineator, p. 33.

Butterick patterns for January 1928. Delineator, p. 33. Composite from original illustration. I’ll return to these patterns in a later post. Love that coat!

There’s a strong Art Deco influence in the geometry of day dresses, and there’s drama, beading, and a flutter of chiffon in the evening.

A beaded gown from Paquin, Frbruary 1928, and a jewel studded gown from Lanvin, March 1928. Delineator magazine.

A gown from Paquin, February 1928, and a jewel-studded evening gown from Lanvin, March 1928. Delineator magazine.

For a knock-out evening coat by Lanvin, circa 1927, click here.

Perhaps it’s because I’m a sixties’ girl that the proportions of 1928 look “right” to me.  Not that I would ever want to wear a straight-torso-with-hip-belt dress, but the knee-length skirt balances them better than the skirt lengths of 1925 or 1926.

Print fabrics, Butterick patterns; Delineator, August 1928.

Print fabrics, Butterick patterns; Delineator, August 1928.

With my library time machine, I’m currently “visiting” 1926, 1927 and 1928.  I try to bounce around from decade to decade in this blog, but getting out of the late Twenties is going to be hard.

Joyful geometry: Butterick patterns in Delineator, February 1928.

Joyful geometry: Butterick patterns in Delineator, February 1928. I love the way the angle of the trim on the bodice is echoed by the angle of the pleated skirt panel. Interesting that the button is located at the natural waist….

I’ve already written about the fashion shift of the mid-twenties (click here.) Just to review, fashions for young women (15 to 20) were slightly shorter than those for mature women in 1925 and 1926.

Patterns for adult women, Delineator, December 1925.

Patterns for adult women, Delineator, December 1925.

Patterns for girls 15 to 20, and small women. Delineator, December 1925.

Patterns for girls 15 to 20, and small women. Delineator, December 1925.

Left, teens 15 to 20; right, adult women. composite based on Delineator, December 1925.

Left, teens 15 to 20; right, adult women. Composite based on Delineator ilustrations, December 1925.

Because teens and adults were drawn differently, it’s hard to get an exact comparison, but the hems on the adult women seem to be a couple of inches farther below the knee. When I compare the two dresses in the center, the orange one on the right looks dowdy to my modern eyes. All four figures are drawn with impossibly long torsos.

Here are some Butterick fashions from 1926:

Pictured are two little girls, and four girls aged "8 to 15 years." Their dresses are quite short, but look like young adult fashions of a couple years later. Delineator, February 1926.

Pictured are two little girls, and four girls aged “8 to 15 years.” Their dresses are quite short, but look like young adult fashions of a year later. Delineator, February 1926.

The proportions on these knee length skirts look “right” to me, but they are not dresses for young women; they are for girls under 15. I especially like that plum colored outfit on the far left.

Two adult women and two girls 8 to 16 years. Delineator, February 1926.

Two adult women flanked by two girls aged 8 to 16 years. Delineator, February 1926.

These are Butterick patterns from 1927:

Women's fashions with straight silhouettes. Butterick 1329 and 1317, Delineator, March 1927.

Women’s fashions with straight silhouettes. Butterick Nos. 1329 and 1317, Delineator, March 1927. I love the use of graded values of the same color, and those repeated geometric, Art Deco jogs on the dress at left — with matching cuffs. Skirts end just below the kneecap.

These couture designs for evening, 1927, use metallic fabrics and beading, and look quintessentially “Twenties.” It would be hard to mistake the dress on the left for any other era.

Left, a fringed and beaded evening gown by Paquin; right a straight metallic dress with ruffles, by Jeanne Carette. Delineator, January 1927, p. 16.

Left, a salmon pink-and-silver fringed and beaded evening gown by Paquin; right, a straight gold metallic cloth dress with finely pleated ruffles, by Yvonne Carette. Delineator, January 1927, p. 16.

Two evening dresses by Chanel. Left, a metallic brocade; right, a dress completely covered with black beads. Delineator, January 1927.

Two evening dresses by Chanel. Left, “deep orange” lace; right, a dress completely covered with black beads. Delineator, January 1927.

1927 jan p 16 designer Chane ltext black beaded J Desvignes illus

Detail of paillette beading on black Chanel dress; Delineator, January 1927.

Detail of paillette beading on black Chanel dress; Delineator, January 1927.  Apparently the beads change direction, giving a checkerboard effect.

If you love the Twenties, it’s hard not to think, “Now, we’re getting somewhere!”

The Metropolitan Museum has a beaded dress from 1926 attributed to Chanel; click here — and don’t forget to click on “Additional Images” for a a close-up of the beading and spangles.

A few images from 1928:

Two women's dresses from October 1928. Butterick 2243 and 2267.

Two women’s dresses from October 1928. Butterick patterns 2243 and 2267. Note the zigzag formed by the skirt panels at right. It’s hard to see, but the band on the left dress is two colors, or two shades of the same color.

This young lady appeared in an ad for Fleischmann’s yeast, which, she said, restored her health. The fabric of her glittering dress is quite striking:

Fleischmann's Yeast ad, Delineator, May 1928.

Fleischmann’s Yeast ad, Delineator, May 1928.

Butterick patterns for women from teens to bust 44". The coat came in sizes 46 and 48, too. Delineator, November 1928. Hems area already on their way down.

Butterick patterns for misses and women (from teens to bust 44″.) The coat came in sizes 46 and 48, too. Delineator, November 1928. Hems are already on their way down.

For more about 1928 “Hems Going Down,” click here. This cartoon dates from 1929.

 

 

 

 

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Filed under 1920s, Children's Vintage styles, Hosiery, Vintage Couture Designs, Vintage patterns, vintage photographs, Vintage Styles in Larger Sizes

Designer Watches for 1928 and 1929

Elgin watch ad, showing designer wristwatches by Callot Soeurs, a Paris couture house. Ad from Delineator, June, 1929.

Elgin watch ad, showing designer wristwatches by Callot Soeurs, a Paris couture house. Ad from Delineator, June, 1929.

Here are some Art Deco wristwatches to dream about. Wouldn’t it be lovely to find one of these “Parisienne” Designer watches in your Christmas Stocking, or in a gift box on your plate at breakfast some morning?

Top of ad for Callot Soeurs designer wristwatches, June, 1929.

Top of ad for Callot Soeurs designer wristwatches, June, 1929.

These Elgin watches, for the summer of 1929, are designed by Callot Soeurs (June ad) and Lucien Lelong (May ad)  — just in time for graduation and wedding gifts.

The watches designed by Callot Soeurs have diamonds on their faces, and cost $75.00 each.

Elgin watch with diamond, Callot Soeurs, 1929.

Elgin watch with diamonds, Callot Soeurs, 1929.

Elgin watch by Callot Soeurs, 1929.

Elgin watch by Callot Soeurs, 1929.There are two diamonds on the case. The black cord wristband was new in the twenties.

Elgin watch by Callot Soeurs, 1929. Note the bracelets on the model.

Elgin watch by Callot Soeurs, 1929. Note the bracelets on the model’s arm.

“Bright with the frozen fire of fine selected diamonds . . . set in solid 14 karat gold . . . three new Elgins whose cases are Callot-designed. One of the greatest style names of Paris, one of its most exclusive houses. . . . Exquisite jewelry, but more than that. Accurate, unfailing, time-true. Paris on the face of it, but each a true American watch at heart. . . . Besides these Callot models there are other Parisiennes both plain and enamel at $35 designed by all the important Paris couturieres. And other diamond watches ascending to the glory of 20 diamonds at $250.”

Callot Soeurs was a long-established House (since 1895,) and their watches are more conservative and less like costume jewelry than the enameled Elgin watches by other designers. In May, Elgin advertised designer watches by Lucien Lelong. They cost $35.00 — no diamonds.

Ad for Elgin watches designed by Lucien Lelong. Delineator, May, 1929.

Ad for Elgin watches designed by Lucien Lelong. Delineator, May, 1929.

You can see the full ad by clicking here. It can be enlarged by clicking here. You can see Elgin watch ads from 1869 to 1972 at Elginwatches.org.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad. Delineator, May 1929.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad. Delineator, May 1929.

The Lelong watches came in “red and blue or black and ivory enamel;” the last watch shown above has a geometric, Art Deco case, but is not enameled. Back in 1928, Elgin sold Designer watches (“Parisiennes”) by several of the most famous couturier houses: Lanvin,  Molyneux, louiseboulanger, Jenny, Agnes (famous for her hats,) and Premet.

Elgin wristwatches designed by Lanvin, Molyneux, and louiseboulanger. Ad, Delineator, Nov. 1928.

Elgin wristwatches designed by Lanvin, Molyneux, and louiseboulanger. Ad, Delineator, Nov. 1928. “New silken thong instead of ribbon” wristband.

Elgin wristwatches designed by Jenny, Agnes, and Premet, Ad, Delineator, Nov. 1928.

Elgin wristwatches designed by Jenny, Agnes, and Premet, Ad, Delineator, Nov. 1928.

$35.00 was a week’s income for a man (or two weeks’ income for a woman) in 1925. (If you have a yen — or many thousands of yen) two of these watches are for sale from Strickland Vintage Watches. The Premet now costs about $1300 and a later version of the Molyneux, about $2000. Browsing through the Strickland collection, I found many lovely things…. They’re not $35.00 any more, of course, but one of these watches in working condition is much rarer now than it was in 1929!

These same six “Parisienne” watches were shown in a color advertisement in the December, 1928, Delineator magazine, along with many other Elgins for men and women. Click here  to see that entire ad in detail. The louiseboulanger watch looks quite different in color! I wish we could see the full color range of all of them. What a collection that would be!

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Filed under 1920s, 1920s-1930s, Old Advertisements & Popular Culture, Uncategorized, Vintage Accessories, Vintage Couture Designs

Paris Fashions from The Delineator, 1929, Part 2

The first page of The Delineator’s Paris Fashion report showed daytime clothes — suits, coats, etc. The second page showed a mix of evening and daytime clothing designs, sketched for the magazine’s November 1929 issue.

Paris Couture for day and evening, Delineator, Nov. 1929, page 27.

Paris Couture for day and evening, Delineator, Nov. 1929, page 27.

This page combined day, afternoon, and evening styles. The illustrator is Leslie Saalburg. The descriptions are direct quotations from The Delineator. In numerical order:

Chanel wool dress, sketched in Delineator, Nov. 1929. p. 27.

Chanel wool georgette dress, sketched in Delineator, Nov. 1929. p. 27.

Similar tucks, used on the diagonal, can be seen on earlier dresses by Vionnet. Click here.

A satin dress by Jenny, sketched for Delineator,Nov. 1929.

A satin dress by Jenny, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929. Crepe-backed satin can be used with either side out, matte or shiny.

Jenny is one of the designers who was very successful in the twenties, but not much discussed now. This 1930 dressing gown by Jenny is in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum. So is this embroidered coat from the 1920’s, with her label.

Evening gown by Cheruit, sketch from Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Evening gown by Cheruit, sketch from Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Cheruit’s elaborate gowns were successful in the first decades of the 20th century. (Click here for an exquisitely sequined dress (in an interesting article) at the Museum of London. After she retired, her house continued in the 1920’s; her premises were later occupied by Schiaparelli (1935).

Long black tulle gown by Lucien Lelong, Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

Long black tulle gown by Lucien Lelong, Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

The tulle is in graduated tucks. Click here for a black tulle Lelong gown from the early 1930’s.

Floral print chiffon evening gown by louiseboulanger. Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

Floral print chiffon evening gown by louiseboulanger. Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

This evening gown, in the collection of FIT, is print chiffon, apparently from the same louiseboulanger 1929 collectionClick here for an earlier 1920’s evening dress by louiseboulanger — it’s short and feathered, and fabulous.

Jean Patou shwed this green velvet evening gown, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Jean Patou showed this green velvet evening gown, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Another Patou from 1929 can be seen here.

Moire taffeta evening gown by louiseboulanger, sketched in Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Moire taffeta evening gown by louiseboulanger, sketched in Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Louise Boulanger worked under several variations of her name. The run-on, all lower case version — louiseboulanger — was the latest.

White satin, one shouldered evening gown by Vionnet, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

White satin, one-shouldered evening gown by Vionnet, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

I have written about Vionnet before. Other evening gowns can be seen here and here.

Blue georgette evening gown by Chanel, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Blue georgette evening gown by Chanel, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

The hem is long all around, unlike most of the other evening hems shown here, which have “dipping” hemlines or long draperies with a short front hem. (Lelong’s black tulle evening gown — #19 –has an even hem that becomes increasingly sheer near the floor.)

A Short black velvet eveing dress by Molyneux, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

A short black velvet evening dress by Molyneux, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

A dress by Vionnet, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

A dress by Vionnet, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Black crepe dress by Lanvin, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Black crepe dress by Lanvin, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Jeanne Lanvin joined the Syndicat de la Couture in 1909. A coat and dress ensemble from Lanvin, at the Met, dated 1926, is so short that it looks nineteen sixties, on first glance.

A tightly fitting evening dress by Jenny, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

A tightly fitting evening dress by Jenny, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Like the Vionnet dress above, (#23) one shoulder is revealed and one is covered.

A long gown by Lanvin, Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

A long gown by Lanvin, Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

The hem appears to be slightly raised in front.

Purple lounging pajamas designed by Mary Nowitsky, from Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Purple lounging pajamas designed by Mary Nowitsky, from Delineator, Nov. 1929.

You can see more about beach and lounging pajamas at The Vintage Traveler or here.

In Part 1, I mentioned that Jean Patou took credit for lowering the hemline in 1929. Here are three images from this 1929 Delineator article; Patou’s dress is slightly longer.

Hems for daytime, Nov. 1929. Patou, Chanel.

Hems for daytime, Nov. 1929. Nowitsky, Patou, Chanel.

Something much more significant, if you’re tracing changes in fashion, is something that can be seen in these four dresses:

Four designs from Nov. 1929. All have natural waistlines, accented with a belt.

Four designs from Nov. 1929. All have natural waistlines, accented with a belt.

Natural waistlines, emphasized with a tight belt. November, 1929. (Street photographs and movies from the late twenties sometimes show that women were already wearing belts at their waists, especially the belts of coats; perhaps because, without a deforming corset, belts tend to rise to the natural waist on a woman with a well-defined waist and wider hips.)

Belted coat from Sears catalog, Spring, 1929. A belt like this will tend to rise to the natural waist when tightened.

Belted coat from Sears catalog, Spring, 1929. A belt like this will tend to rise to the natural waist when tightened.

(“Kit fox dyed coney trimmed collar” means the collar was trimmed with rabbit fur.)

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Filed under 1920s, 1920s-1930s, Vintage Couture Designs