Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of Edith Gardiner, 1926
Not on view
This is an iconic coat of the House of Worth. The construction is meant to emphasize the textile in the most dramatic way and would have been custom made for the House. The House of Worth was founded with an interest in heavily supporting the textile industry through vast amounts of elaborate textiles. This is an example of how that mission continued on through the design's of Charles Frederick Worth's son.
Jean-Philippe Worth began as an assistant to his father, Charles Frederick Worth, in 1875. Gradually he was allowed to create his own designs and when his father died in 1895, he became the lead designer for the house. He was praised for making elaborate artistic gowns with intricate trimmings on unique textiles, much like his father had before him. Although the House of Worth was still favored by royalty and celebrities through the turn of the century, their styles were no longer the forefront of French fashion after 1900. Around 1910 Jean-Philippe limited his design work to important orders and hired his nephew, Jean-Charles Worth, as the new lead designer before leaving the company entirely after World War I.