Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Evening dress

Designer:
Elsa Schiaparelli (Italian, 1890–1973)
Date:
fall 1939
Culture:
French
Medium:
silk
Credit Line:
Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of Arturo and Paul Peralta-Ramos, 1954
Accession Number:
2009.300.2406
Not on view
In luxurious satin of a delicate, subtle cross between pale blue and gray, this evening dress from the fall 1939 collection exudes an understated chic and sophistication. The characteristic Schiaparelli plastic zipper cuts down the bodice and is prominently displayed down the torso. While many designers tried to conceal closures, Schiaparelli incorporated them as part of the design as both functional and decorative elements. The construction is intriguing, with the drapery and closure on the front, like the dress is being worn backwards, surely a Surrealist-inspired idea. Short sleeves on an evening dress are also an unusual, witty choice. Worn by the ever stylish Millicent Rogers, this evening dress would have created a stir, always the point when wearing Schiaparelli.
Marking: Label: "Schiaparelli/21.place vendôme/Paris/Automne 1939/68871"
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