Collection of Vintage Celebrity Portraits by Baron Adolph de Meyer

Baron Adolph de Meyer (1868 – 1946) was a photographer famed for his elegant photographic portraits in the early 20th century, many of which depicted celebrities such as Mary Pickford, Rita Lydig, Luisa Casati, Billie Burke, Irene Castle, John Barrymore, Lillian Gish, Ruth St. Denis, King George V of the United Kingdom, and Queen Mary. He was also the first official fashion photographer for the American magazine Vogue, appointed to that position in 1913.

Today, few of his prints survive, most were destroyed during World War II

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Billie Burke by Baron Adolph de Meyer via

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 Ruth St. Denis in The Revelation of the Goddess from Omika by Baron Adolph de Meyer via

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Lillian Gish by Baron Adolph de Meyer via

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Irene Castle 1921 by Baron Adolph de Meyer via

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Mary Pickford Wedding Portrait by Baron Adolph de Meyer via

 

Portrait of Marchesa Luisa Casati by Adolf de Meyer

Portrait of Marchesa Luisa Casati by Baron Adolph de Meyer via

Stylish & Elegant Vintage Madeleine Vionnet Fashion Photography

Madeleine Vionnet (1876 – 1975) was a French fashion designer. Called the “Queen of the bias cut” and “the architect among dressmakers”. With her bias cut clothes, Vionnet dominated haute couture in the 1930s setting trends with her sensual gowns worn by such stars as Marlene Dietrich, Katharine Hepburn and Greta Garbo.

Vionnet’s vision of the female form revolutionized modern clothing and the success of her unique cuts assured her reputation. She fought for copyright laws in fashion and employed what were considered revolutionary labor practices at the time – paid holidays and maternity leave, day-care, a dining hall, a resident doctor and dentist.

Vionnet was also the first designer to introduce a prêt-à-porter (ready to wear) line based on her couture pieces, which she sold in the United States. Today, Madeleine Vionnet is considered one of the most influential fashion designers of the 20th century.

Madeleine Vionnet


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Edward Steichen. Marion Morehouse and unidentified model wearing dresses by Vionnet. 1930 Courtesy Condé Nast Archive © 1930 Condé Nast Publications

Cecil Beaton, Madeleine Vionnet

Madeleine Vionnet, 1935

Vionnet hound’s tooth coat with three buttons and a transformable collar, 1930

A Collection of Photos Feat. Fashion Icon Irene Castle

Irene Castle (1893 – 1969) was born Irene Foote in New Rochelle, New York. The daughter of a prominent physician, she studied dancing and performed in several amateur theatricals before meeting Vernon Castle at the New Rochelle Rowing Club in 1910. With his help, she was hired for her first professional job, a small dancing part in “The Summer Widowers”. The next year the two were married. The English-born Vernon had already established himself as a dancer in comedic roles. His specialty was playing a gentleman drunk, who elegantly fell about the stage while trying to hide his condition.

In 1914 the couple reached the peak of their popularity in Irving Berlin’s first Broadway show, Watch Your Step, in which they refined and popularized the Foxtrot. They also helped to popularize ragtime jazz rhythms and African-American music for dance.

As the couple’s celebrity increased in the mid-1910s, Irene Castle became a major fashion trendsetter, initiating the vogue for shorter skirts. She is also credited with introducing American women to the bob – the short hairstyle favored by flappers in the 1920s. Her elegant, yet simple, flowing gowns worn in performance were often featured in fashion magazines. These were often supplied by the couturier “Lucile”, but Irene also designed some of her clothes herself. The whisper-thin, elegant Castles were trendsetters in other ways: they traveled with a black orchestra, had an openly lesbian manager, and were animal-rights advocates decades before it became a public issue.

In 1918, after serving with distinction as a pilot in the Royal Flying Corps during World War I, Vernon died in a plane crash. Irene continued to perform and made silent films over the next decade. She remarried, had children and became an animal-rights activist.

   

Irene Castle introduced her “Castle bob” to an American audience in 1915.

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Irene Castle wearing French designer Madeleine Vionnet, 1922

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Irene Castle wearing French designer Madeleine Vionnet, 1922

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Irene Castle / photograph by Moffett, Chicago, 1915 via

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Irene Castle in dance costume / photographs by Ira L. Hill’s Studio via

Irene Castle Winter Costume, before 1917

Irene Castle Ball Gown before, 1917

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 Irene Castle, New York World’s Fair (1939-1940) via

The Castle Walk

 The original Castle Walk by Vernon and Irene Castle in 1915.

The Europe Society Orchestra wrote the song “The Castle Walk” specifically for the Castles and this dance,

 

Edwardian Era Fashion by Lucile

Lucy Christiana, Lady Duff-Gordon (née Sutherland) (1863 –1935) was best known by her professional name “Lucile”. Who was at the beginning of the twentieth century one of the most innovative, forward thinking designers. Much like her contemporary, Paul Poiret, she designed clothes for the modern woman. She launched liberating slit skirts and low necklines, popularized less restrictive corsets, and promoted alluring, pared-down lingerie.

She originated the “mannequin parade”, a precursor to the modern fashion show, and trained the first professional models who were almost as famous as she was. She gave them poetic names, like Hebe, Corisande and Dolores.

She opened branches of her London house, Lucile Ltd, in Paris, New York City and Chicago, dressing a trend-setting clientele of royalty, nobility, and stage and film personalities. Some well-known clients, whose clothing influenced many when it appeared in early films, on stage, and in the press, included: Irene Castle, Lily Elsie,Gertie Millar, Gaby Deslys, Billie Burke, and Mary Pickford.

Lucile costumed many theatrical productions including the London première of Franz Lehár’s operetta The Merry Widow (1907), the Ziegfeld Follies revues on Broadway (1915–21), and the D. W. Griffith silent movie Way Down East (1920). Her fashions were also frequently featured in Pathé and Gaumont newsreels of the 1910s and 20s, and she appeared in her own weekly spot in the British newsreel “Around the Town” (c. 1917–1919)

Lucy Duff Gordon is also remembered as a survivor of the sinking of Titanic in 1912.

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Lady Lucy Duff Gordon with her dogs by Marceau via

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Lily Elsie in The Merry Widow, 1909, costume by Lucile via

Lily Elsie, shown here in a costume designed by Gordon for a 1909 play called “The Dollar Princess.” via

A model in a dress by Lucile (Lady Duff Gordon), ca. 1912 via

1921 Lucile evening gown of a black chantilly lace hoop over a white satin slip, shown at the National Retail Garment Association Fashion Show at the Hotel Commodore, NYC. From Ebay.

1921 Lucile evening gown of a black chantilly lace hoop over a white satin slip, shown at the National Retail Garment Association Fashion Show at the Hotel Commodore, NYC via