Photos Feat. Designs by Lucien Lelong

Lucien Lelong  (1889 – 1959) was born in Paris as the son of Arthur Lelong, the owner of a textile shop, he trained at the Hautes Etudes de Commerciales in Paris and opened his fashion house in the late 1910s. He was  eager to create garments that would highlight the body’s movements and elegance in motion: a kinetic fashion. He killed the 1920s “garçonne” look and privileged fluid garments inspired by neoclassical drapery, and later anticipated the New Look.

Lelong did not actually create the garments that bore his label. “He did not design himself, but worked through his designers,” wrote Christian Dior, who was a member of the Lelong team from 1941 until 1946, during which time he created the collections in collaboration with Pierre Balmain. “Nevertheless,” Dior continued, “in the course of his career as couturier his collections retained a style which was really his own and greatly resembled him.” Other designers who worked for Lelong included Nadine Robinson and Hubert de Givenchy.

Among Lelong’s clients were Marie Duhamel, Jeanne Ternisien (wife of the banker Georges Nelze), the Duchess de la Rochefoucauld, Greta Garbo, Gloria Swanson, Colette, and Rose Kennedy.

On the 10th August 1927 he married his second wife, Princess Natalie Paley (1905–1981), who had worked as a saleswoman in the Lelong perfume department. She was a daughter of Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovich of Russia and his morganatic wife, Olga Karnovich. Paley had starred in a few films, but found her succes being a Lelong model. They divorced in 1937.

Lelong retired in 1952, due to Poor health. Lelong’s third wife, who outlived him, went on to marry the French journalist Maurice Goudeket, the widower of Colette.

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Deutsch Photographic Studio, Lucien Lelong Design, 1930s via

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Marion Morehouse wearing a Lucien Lelong dress. Vogue, 1925 via

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Dress by Lucien Lelong via

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Nathalie Paley in a Lucien Lelong dress and evening coat by Dorvyne via

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Deutsch Photographic Studio, Lucien Lelong Design, 1930s via

Princess Nathalie Paley in Lucien Lelong by Man Ray, 1935

Princess Natalie Paley wearing a black sequined evening gown by Lelong. Photo by Man Ray, 1934 via

Iconic 1960s Model Jean Shrimpton in New York by David Bailey (1962)

Jean Shrimpton’s (1942) was a fashion model and icon of Swinging London. Her  career rose to prominence through her work with photographer David Bailey.

Of Jean Shrimpton, Bailey said:

She was magic and the camera loved her too. In a way she was the cheapest model in the world – you only needed to shoot half a roll of film and then you had it. She had the knack of having her hand in the right place, she knew where the light was, she was just a natural.

Shrimpton’s first photo session with Bailey was in 1960 (either for Condé Nast’s Brides on 7 December 1960 or for British Vogue). She started to become known in the modelling world around the time she was working with Bailey.

Shrimpton has stated she owed Bailey her career, and he is often credited for discovering her and being influential in her career.

In turn, she was Bailey’s muse, and his photographs of her helped him rise to prominence in his early career.

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David Bailey, Jean Shrimpton, New York, 1962

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David Bailey, Jean Shrimpton, New York, 1962 via

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David Bailey, Jean Shrimpton, New York, 1962 via

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David Bailey, Jean Shrimpton, New York, 1962 via

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David Bailey, Jean Shrimpton, New York, 1962 via

Paul Newman on a Watertaxi (1963)

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American actor and Hollywood star and icon – Paul Newman, looking handsome and beautiful as ever and ultra cool, wearing a tuxedo and a bow tie, during a trip on a water taxi, a sailor cap on the dashboard, Venice 1963 via

Dovima and the Leopard by Richard Avedon (1950)

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Richard Avedon, Dovima wearing a Leopard fur coat by Bernham-Stein, 1950 via

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Richard Avedon, Dovima, Harper’s Bazaar, 1950 via

Late Victorian Fancy Dress: The Devonshire House Ball in 1897

The Devonshire House Costume Ball of 1897 was one of the most anticipated social events of 1897. To stress the importance of th magnificent affair, the London Photographic Firm Lafayette was invited to take studio-style photographs of the guests in their costumes, which ranged from mythical goddesses, figures from paintings, and historical kings and queens.

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The Duke of York, later King George V (1865-1936), as “The Queen’s Champion” and the Duchess of York, later Queen Mary (1867-1953)  as “a Lady at the Court of Marguerite de Valois” at the Devonshire House Fancy Dress Ball, 1897 via

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Frances Evelyn (Daisy), the countess of Warwick, chose Marie Antoinette as her costume for the elegant and highly anticipated evening. The costume, made by Worth of Paris, was studded with real diamonds and used both gold and antique lace via

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Lady Randolph Churchill (1854-1921), née Jennie Jerome in a Worth Parisian Costume, as Empress Theodora, while attending the Devonshire House Ball, 1897 via

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Consuelo Marlborough (née Vanderbilt), dressed for the Devonshire House Ball, 1897 via

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Mary Teresa (‘Daisy’) (Cornwallis-West), Princess of Pless dressed as Queen of Sheba for the Devonshire House Ball via

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Miss Goelet as Scheherazade via

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The ethereal beauty of Mrs J Graham Menzies in the role of Titania, Queen of the Fairies via

Evelyn Nesbit by Otto Sarony (1901)

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Otto Sarony, Portrait of Evelyn Nesbit, 1901 via

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Otto Sarony, Portrait of Evelyn Nesbit, 1901 via