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Picture hat
  • Picture hat
    Balenciaga, Cristóbal, born 1895 - died 1972
  • Enlarge image

Picture hat

  • Place of origin:

    Paris (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1955 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

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

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Organza

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mrs D.M. Haynes and Mrs M. Clark

  • Museum number:

    T.169-1982

  • Gallery location:

    On short term loan out for exhibition, case B24

Physical description

Black organza wide-brimmed picture hat. With original Balenciaga box.

Place of Origin

Paris (made)

Date

ca. 1955 (made)

Artist/maker

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

Materials and Techniques

Organza

Object history note

Opal Holt was born in Canada in 1887 but lived in the US until the end of the Second World War. She travelled extensively between the wars and was in the first plane to land in Bali. She married Herbert Holt, a Canadian who lived a large part of his life in England, as her third husband in 1946. They came to England and Europe every summer and Opal Holt began buying clothes in Paris for her life in England, and for the Bahamas in Winter, over a period of about thirty years. She died in 1980.

Given by Mrs D.M Haynes and Mrs. Clark (nee Holt; Opal Holt's step-daughters).

Descriptive line

Organza wide-brimmed picture hat, designed by Cristóbal Balenciaga, Paris, ca. 1955

Labels and date

‘Balenciaga’s hats are an integral part of his fashion,’ reported the French fashion review Jardin des modes in 1961. They ensure ‘that volumes are balanced and the silhouette is perfectly finished off.’ Fairly conventional ensembles were often paired with a striking hat which lifted the whole look and made it appear more avant- garde. The client could buy the whole ensemble or leave the hat if it was too daring. The designs for hats were as fiercely protected as those for dresses. The police commissioner stamped the official sketches of the hats to protect them from being copied.

Wide organza picture hat and box
Cristóbal Balenciaga, Paris, about 1955
Given by Mrs D.M. Haynes and Mrs M. Clark
V&A: T.169-1982; NCOL.694:1, 2-2016 [12/05/2017]

Categories

Fashion; Hats & headwear; Women's clothes; Accessories

Collection

Textiles and Fashion Collection

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