Iconic Fashion Designer Coco Chanel by Cecil Beaton (1937)

NPG x40048; Gabrielle ('Coco') Chanel by Cecil Beaton

Coco Chanel, by Cecil Beaton 1937 © Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby’s London via

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Coco Chanel, by Cecil Beaton 1937 © Cecil Beaton Studio Archive, Sotheby’s London via

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Coco Chanel in Her Atelier Dressing Romy Schneider (1962)

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Shahrock Hatami, Coco Chanel and Romy Schneider, 1962 via

©Photo: BottiStills - GAMMA

Shahrock Hatami, Coco Chanel and Romy Schneider, 1962 via

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Shahrock Hatami, Coco Chanel and Romy Schneider, 1962 via

00/00/1960. Coco Chanel and Romy Schneider.

Shahrock Hatami, Coco Chanel and Romy Schneider, 1962 via

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Shahrock Hatami, Coco Chanel and Romy Schneider, 1962 via

00/00/1960. Coco Chanel and Romy Schneider.

Shahrock Hatami, Coco Chanel and Romy Schneider, 1962 via

 

Claire McCardell Wearing Amazing Dresses of Her Own Creation (1945)

Claire McCardell (May 24, 1905 – 1958) was an American fashion designer in the arena of ready-to-wear clothing in the 20th century. She is credited with the creation of American sportswear.

In 1942, McCardell created her famed “Popover Dress.” It was a response to a Harper’s Bazaar challenge to create something fashionable you could wear to clean the house and then wear to a cocktail party. The simple grey dress came with a matching potholder which fit into the dress’s pocket. The “Popover Dress” sold for $6.95 and over 75,000 were sold in the first season alone.

These dresses became a staple of McCardells collections and over time she made version in different lengths and fabrics. The “Popover Dress” received a citation from the American Fashion Critics Association and in 1943, McCardell won a Coty Award.

Beginning in 1945, McCardell was featured as an “American Look” designer by Lord & Taylor’s department store.  In 1946, McCardell won the Best Sportswear Designer Award and in 1948 she won the Neiman-Marcus Award.

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Claire McCardell in a Dress of her creation, 1945 via

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Claire McCardell in a Dress of her creation, 1945 via

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Claire McCardell in her Futuristic Dress (cut only of triangles), photographed by Erwin Blumenfeld, 1945 via

Gorgeous Vintage Sculptural Dresses By Charles James (1950)

Charles James (1906 – 1978) was a British-born fashion designer known as “America’s First Couturier”. He is widely considered to have been a master of cutting and is known for his highly structured aesthetic

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Charles James, Dresses, photographed by Eliot Elisonfon, 1950

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Charles James, Dresses, photographed by Eliot Elisonfon, 1950

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Charles James, Dresses, photographed by Eliot Elisonfon, 1950

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Charles James, Dresses, photographed by Eliot Elisonfon, 1950

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Charles James, Dresses, photographed by Eliot Elisonfon, 1950

Revolutionary Belle Epoque Fashion: Jeanne Margaine-Lacroix

Jeanne Margaine-Lacroix has been neglected by fashion historians. She inherited her couture house from her mother Mme. Margaine, in 1899. The following year she changed the name to Margaine-Lacroix.

She influenced the new slender line of fashion. She was famous for her revolutionary corsetless dresses and her ground-breaking front-lacing corsets. In the 1900s, Paris was the fashion capital of the world. Couturiers routinely sent mannequins to the racecourse, wearing their latest designs. Her models caused a sensation at Longchamp in 1908.

Three mannequins walked onto the racecourse dressed in blue, white and havane brown creations by Margaine-Lacroix. According to newspapers, spectators called the three women a “monstrosity”, accused them of being semi-naked and showing revolting décolletage .

However, soon women everywhere were wearing dresses after Margaine-Lacroix’s design.

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In the Spring of 1908, three women walked onto the Longchamp racecourse in Paris and caused a scandal by the semi-naked clothes they were wearing via

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Longchamp racecourse, Paris 1908 via

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Tanagréenne back drape on Sylphide dress by Jeanne Margaine-Lacroix. Here is an example of her slender, corsetless line, the robe-tanagréenne. It is worn by her favourite model, who small bust and simple hairstyle were avant-garde for the time and contrasted strongly with the generally accepted ideals of fashionable feminine beauty in the first decade of the twentieth-century, 1908 via

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Sylphide dress with Tanagréenne back drape by Jeanne Margaine-Lacroix, 1908 via

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Margaine-Lacroix mannequins pictured in the Parc de Vincennes in March 1910, wearing the new jupe-culotte – an early version of trousers via

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March 1910. Margaine-Lacroix mannequins in the new jupe-culotte via