American Dancer Jean Barry (1930s)

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Dancer Jean Barry, ca. 1931. Photo by George Hoyningen-Huene via

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Dancer Jean Barry, performing in the play Evergreen, 1931. Photo by George Hoyningen-Huene via

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Dancer Jean Barry, 1931. Photo by Edward Steichen via

Vintage Photos of Elegant Millinery by Madame Agnès

Madame Agnes (late 1800s-1949) was France’s most popular milliner. She designed hats that were popular from the late 1920s until the 1940s. She was famous for cutting the brims of her hats while they were worn by her customers. Her shop was located on the Rue Saint-Honoré.

She associated with people in the art circles of Paris and styled hats that were both abstract and unique. She preferred wearing only black fashions, fx. in 1929 she wore black satin frocks designed by Vionnet. Her clothes were embellished with bright jewelry like red coral, jade or lapis lazuli.

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Madame Agnes in her shop in Paris, 1935.

Madame Agnes in her shop in Paris, 1935

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Edward Steichen, Dorothy Smart, hat by Madame Agnès, 1926

Madame d’Ora- Madame Jean Lassalle portant des bijoux Jean Fouquet et un chapeau de Madame Agnès, mars 1929. http://fantomas-en-cavale.tumblr.com

Madame Jean Lassalle hat by Madame Agnès, Madame d’Ora, 1929

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Portrait of the milliner Agnès by Madame d’Ora, Paris, 1928-1931

Model in hat of bird of paradise feathers by Madame Agnès (milliner), spangled jacket by Maggy Rouff, photo by George Hoyningen-Huene, Harper’s Bazaar, 1935

Model in hat of bird of paradise feathers by Madame Agnès, spangled jacket by Maggy Rouff, photo by George Hoyningen-Huene, Harper’s Bazaar, 1935

Early 20th Century Photos of Iconic French Designer Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel

Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel (1883 – 1971) was a French fashion designer and founder of the Chanel brand. She is the only fashion designer listed on Time magazine’s list of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century. Along with Paul Poiret, Chanel was credited with liberating women from the constraints of the “corseted silhouette” and popularizing the acceptance of a sportive, casual chic as the feminine standard in the post-World War I era. A prolific fashion creator, Chanel’s influence extended beyond couture clothing. Her design aesthetic was realized in jewelry, handbags, and fragrance. Her signature scent, Chanel No. 5, has become an iconic product.

Chanel was known for her lifelong determination, ambition, and energy which she applied to her professional and social life. She achieved both success as a businesswoman and social prominence thanks to the connections she made through her work. These included many artists and craftspeople to whom she became a patron. However, Chanel’s life choices generated controversy, particularly her behaviour during the German occupation of France in World War II.

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Coco Chanel via

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Coco Chanel à Moulins, 1903 via

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Gabrielle Chanel, Deauville, 1913 via

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Coco Chanel via

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Salvador Dalí and Coco Chanel via

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Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel 1931 via

A Collection of Photos Featuring Designs by Madame Grès (1930s)

Germaine Émilie Krebs (1903–1993), known as Alix Barton and later as “Madame Grès”, relaunched her design house under the name Grès in Paris in 1942. Prior to this, she worked as “Alix” or “Alix Grès” during the 1930s. Formally trained as a sculptress, she produced haute couture designs for an array of fashionable women, including the Duchess of Windsor, Marlene Dietrich, Greta Garbo, Jacqueline Kennedy, and Dolores del Río.

Her signature was cut-outs on gowns that made exposed skin part of the design, yet still had a classical, sophisticated feel. She was renowned for being the last of the haute couture houses to establish a ready-to-wear line, which she called a “prostitution”.

The name Grès was a partial anagram of her husband’s first name and alias. He was Serge Czerefkov, a Russian painter, who left her soon after the house’s creation. 

She retired at the end of the 1980s after French investor Bernard Tapie took control of the company. She died in a low-cost retirement home, apparently alone and penniless.

In 2012, the last Grès store in Paris was closed.

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Germaine Krebs (1903-1993) dite Alix puis Madame Grès, créant une robe du soir pour Macy’s. Paris, août 1933 via

Germaine Krebs (1903-1993) dite Alix puis Madame Grès, à l'époque de la maison Alix Barton, créant un modèle drapé sur un mannequin. Paris, 1933.

Madame Grès draping a dress, photographed by Boris Lipnitzki, ca. 1935 via

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Madame Grès, Dress, photographed by Eugène Rubin for Femina, 1937 via

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Madame Grès by George Hoyningen-Huene, 1937 via