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  • Coat
    Balenciaga, Cristóbal, born 1895 - died 1972
  • Enlarge image


  • Place of origin:

    Paris (made)

  • Date:

    1955 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

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

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Plain woven cotton

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Miss Sophie Satin

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Balenciaga was the most exclusive fashion house in Paris immediately after World War II. The Spanish-born couturier Cristóbal Balenciaga (1895-1972), regarded by his peers as ‘the Master’, had moved to Paris from Spain in 1937. By 1952 he had 232 employees there and was producing 356 new designs per year. His clients, admitted to his salon only after a personal introduction, included many cosmopolitan women of different nationalities.

Balenciaga was a perfectionist in cutting, sewing and finishing garments, and was renowned for his exacting standards. Plain fabrics show up defects in any aspect of dressmaking so this coat reveals his craftsmanship. It reveals his skill in paring down his design into an elegant pea-green organdie 'duster' coat which is almost timeless in line (worn here over T.126-1982). Organdie is a semi-transparent fabric, usually made from cotton, and firm in handle.

Physical description

Evening 'duster' coat of pea-green organdie plain woven cotton.

Place of Origin

Paris (made)


1955 (made)


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

Materials and Techniques

Plain woven cotton

Marks and inscriptions

Balenciaga, 10 Avenue George V, Paris
Label; black on white; inside back collar

Number handwritten on back of label


Length: 42 cm Sleeve, Length: 97 cm Shoulder seam to hem, Width: 16 cm Cuff, Circumference: 130 cm Sweep of coat

Object history note

This coat was designed for Mrs Alexandra Verderevsky who lived in Paris and was a personal friend of Cristóbal Balenciaga.

Descriptive line

Evening 'duster' coat of cotton organdie, designed by Cristóbal Balenciaga, Paris, 1955

Labels and date

Evening dress and coat (robe du soir)
Cristóbal Balenciaga (1895-1972)
1954 spring and 1955

Balenciaga uses the simplest of fabric and a pared-down cut to create an elegant sleeveless summer gown, worn under a pea-green silk 'duster' coat. [25 words]

Dress: ribbed cotton
Coat: silk organdie



Cotton (textile)




Fashion; Evening wear; Women's clothes

Production Type

Haute couture


Textiles and Fashion Collection

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