Tuesday, March 12, 2013

History's Runway: The Lanvin Fern Gown, 1922

This and all related images from:
The Victoria & Albert Museum

Jeanne Lanvin (1867-1946)—the name immediately puts one in mind of 1920s elegance. Lanvin, during the 20’s, was applauded for ultra-feminine dresses with fitted bodices and long, full skirts. These flowing creations were dubbed, “robes de style.” Here’s an excellent example of this type of gown by Lanvin.

This black silk taffeta dress boasts a boat neckline, and small, capped half-sleeves which fasten down the side. The gown is given drama with a pair of immense fern which have been embroidered in furry cream chenille on the skirt. This cream color is repeated in floating bands caught in silk georgette bows at the right sleeve and left waist.

The label reads:

'HIVER 1922-1923'

Lanvin’s designs of this era stand out primarily because her silhouettes were feminine and full skirted at a time when her fellow couturiers were producing boyish, tubular gowns. Her romantic designs were favored by magazine editors who found Lanvin’s work more appealingly photogenic.

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