Evening dress, House of Worth (French, 1858–1956), silk, beads, metal thread, French

Evening dress

Design House:
House of Worth (French, 1858–1956)
silk, beads, metal thread
Credit Line:
Gift of Mrs. Harrison Williams, Lady Mendl, and Mrs. Ector Munn, 1946
Accession Number:
Not on view
As the nineteenth century came to a close, Jean-Philippe and Gaston Worth succeeded their father as designers for the House of Worth. The house continued its virtuoso technical achievements, as represented in this example, in which metallic thread is embroidered in a meandering floral motif. In the 1920s a silhouette at variance to any other period emerged—the chemise dress, nearly planar in construction, suggested that the body was flat in front, flat in back, and with no discernible articulation of chest, waist, or hips. This dress was worn by the Marquise de Polignac when she was presented at court and, despite its modern cylindrical silhouette, featured a back panel that acted as a faux train paying homage to the tradition of Charles Worth's legendary relationship to the Second Empire court.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Bloom: Fashion's Spring Gardens," March 30, 1995–August 20, 1995.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Paris Openings, 1932–1940," November 19, 1940–February 11, 1941.

The John Wanamaker Auditorium. "Exhibition of Dresses Worn by Well-known Women of Europe and America," May 1, 1940–May 31, 1940.

John Wanamaker. "Exhibition of Dresses Worn by Well-known Women of Europe and America," June 5, 1940–July 5, 1940.