Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Dress

Designer:
Claire McCardell (American, 1905–1958)
Manufacturer:
Townley Frocks (American, founded 1929)
Date:
1943
Culture:
American
Medium:
cotton
Credit Line:
Gift of Claire McCardell, 1949
Accession Number:
C.I.49.37.41
Not on view
From the full skirt through the clinging wrap of the bodice, McCardell has here demonstrated her acute understanding of Madame Grès and Madeleine Vionnet. In fact, the wrapping in this dress, while variable according to the needs of the individual body of the wearer, gives the effect of being as precisely calculated and measured as any product of the couture. McCardell understood differing bodies, but she was not arriving at a mean point, nor was she tolerating the lack of fit of 1990s dress. Instead, she was looking for the dress that seemed perfect and as consummately fitted as any couture garment even though it was mass-produced.
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