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Evening dress

Evening dress

  • Place of origin:

    Paris (made)

  • Date:

    1949-1950 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Balenciaga, Cristóbal, born 1895 - died 1972 (designer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Velvet and silk taffeta, metal zip

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Miss Catherine Hunt

  • Museum number:

    T.127-1970

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

The dress consists of a violet velvet strapless bodice and a white silk taffeta skirt reaching just above the ankle. A violet satin drape is attached a the sides of the bodice, drapes over the breasts and crosses on the chest before forming two draped straps at the back stitched at the waist. The back of the skirt is composed of two curved overlapping panels of violet satin forming a train but attached to the sides of the white silk front skirt. The bodice is lined with matching chiffon and boned. It fastens with a metal zip under the left arm. There is a black grosgrain ribbon stitched around the top. The bottom is mounted on a white silk grosgrain ribbon with loops for suspension. The dress is in poor condition and difficult to assemble to its original shape.

Place of Origin

Paris (made)

Date

1949-1950 (made)

Artist/maker

Balenciaga, Cristóbal, born 1895 - died 1972 (designer)

Materials and Techniques

Velvet and silk taffeta, metal zip

Marks and inscriptions

No label

Object history note

This dress is in very poor condition and difficult to assemble to its original shape.
Probably model number 56, a/w 1949 (as suggested by Mme. Jouve, former Balenciaga archivist), or as illustrated in Miller, L., 'Perfect Harmony' in Wilcox, C., ed., The Golden Age of Couture: Paris and London 1947-57 (V&A Publications, London), pl.5.4.

This dress was worn by Martita Hunt, the British actress. Given by her sister Miss Catherine Hunt following her death (see registered paper 69/2325). Martita Hunt (1900-1969) was a British theatre and film actress, best known for her 1946 performance as Miss Havisham in David Lean's film version of 'Great Expectations'.

Descriptive line

Velvet and silk evening dress, probably Balenciaga, Paris, Autumn/winter 1949-1950

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Miller, L., 'Perfect Harmony' in Wilcox, C., ed., The Golden Age of Couture: Paris and London 1947-57 (V&A Publications, London), pl.5.4.

Materials

Velvet; Silk taffeta

Techniques

Weaving

Categories

Fashion; Clothing

Production Type

Haute couture

Collection

Textiles and Fashion Collection

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