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14-03-2007
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A feature on style.com: Simply shocking - http://www.style.com/vogue/feature/100603/page2.html

Quote:
Stylish Thirties- Elsa Schiaparelli
The Italian Elsa Schiaparelli 1890-1973 had a love of rich fabrics and feminine fantasy clothes that frequently had a surreal twist. She mixed with the now famous cubist and surrealist artists Man Ray, Salvador Dali, Marcel Duchamp and Francis Picabia. Fabric and accessories were often designed for her by Dali, Jean Cocteau and Christian Berard. She began her early career with Trompe l'Oeil effects and a famous navy sweater with a contrast cream neckline and cream bow knitted into the design.
Despite the fact that Schiaparelli had a witty side she was just the fashion inspiration that women who preferred classic styles needed. Those that loathed the swathes of pastel chiffon produced by Vionnet were easily compensated by 'Scap's' couture short fitted suits or jackets teamed with black dresses. She used colours like turquoise or shocking pink or hyacinth blue.
Beyond the little black dress which she frequently designed, she would accessorise with humour and designed funky hats made to appear as mutton chops or ice cream cones. Her eccentricity was much loved and her clothes were revolutionary at the time.
She designed a wide shouldered masculine suit that Marlene Dietrich wore and which was copied throughout Hollywood. She launched shoulder pads in man tailored severe suits long before power dressing of the 80s. It was her late 1930s tailored suit designs which were thought the most suitable clothing to embrace in the war years rather than the wasp waist bouffant dresses that were shown just before the war started.
Schiaparelli and Chanel were great rivals who both vied for top designer fame and competed hotly against each other over their perfumes. Schiaparelli's Shocking perfume in an hour glass bottle designed on Mae West's figure was fiercely competitive against Chanel's perfume Chanel No 5.
Schiaparelli fled to the USA at outbreak of World War Two and never regained her designer dominance again. She continued to lecture on fashion throughout the war years in America. She held her final fashion show in 1954.
The Zip

Schiaparelli liked new things as well as new ideas. In 1933 she promoted the fastener we call the zip or zipper. The metal zip had been invented in 1893 and by 1917 it was somewhat timidly used for shoes, tobacco pouches and U.S. Navy windcheater jackets. Her use of the new plastic coloured zip in fashion clothes was both decorative, functional and highly novel. They soon became universally used and are now a very reliable form of fastening.
fashion-era.com

Evening dress and headscarf in Tear design, Elsa Schiaparelli, Summer/Fall 1938. Philadelphia Museum of Art, museum no. 1969-232-45a, b

v&a museum's site

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Last edited by Whitelinen; 28-05-2007 at 01:34 PM.
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14-03-2007
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'The Skeleton Dress'
Elsa Schiaparelli
France
1938
Silk crepe
Museum no. T.394-1974

v&a museum's site

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"Because of all sorts of cloth have their motions, as well as Bodies, it must needs that they differ in themselves." -Lomazzo

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14-03-2007
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Evening ensemble, 1938
Elsa Schiaparelli (French, born Italy, 1890–1973)
Ivory silk organza embroidered with metallic thread, purl, and rhinestones
Gift of Mrs. Harrison Williams, Lady Mendl, and Mrs. Ector Munn, 1946 (C.I.46.4.3a–e)


met.org

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"Because of all sorts of cloth have their motions, as well as Bodies, it must needs that they differ in themselves." -Lomazzo

Last edited by Whitelinen; 28-05-2007 at 01:34 PM.
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14-03-2007
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Evening ensemble, 1939
Elsa Schiaparelli (French, born Italy, 1890–1973)
Orange silk organza with metallic stripes and orange silk
Gift of Mrs. Harrison Williams, Lady Mendl, and Mrs. Ector Munn, 1946 (C.I.46.4.10a–c)


met.org

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"Because of all sorts of cloth have their motions, as well as Bodies, it must needs that they differ in themselves." -Lomazzo

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14-03-2007
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http://www.mosne.lacab.it

'The Skeleton Dress'
Elsa Schiaparelli
France
1938
Silk crepe
Museum no. T.394-1974

V&A museum

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"Because of all sorts of cloth have their motions, as well as Bodies, it must needs that they differ in themselves." -Lomazzo

Last edited by Whitelinen; 28-05-2007 at 01:34 PM.
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14-03-2007
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Quote:
Elsa Schiaparelli considered designing an art rather than a profession, making the unconventional acceptable. Born into a high ranking Italian family, her creativity was influenced by accepting the visually rich and rebelling against her extremely regulatory and proper upbringing. Much of her extravagance was inspired by the proper yet dramatic vestments of the priests and nuns remembered from her youth in Rome, combined with the city's architecture, magnificent medieval manuscripts, and ancient Greco-Roman mythology from the library where her father worked. The opulent and fanciful bead-work and embroidery Schiaparelli later produced in Paris was reminiscent of stained glass windows and had its roots in her youth in Italy. Other influences in her work were the futurists, cubists, New York dadaism, Parisian surrealists, and art déco.
Schiaparelli began designing gowns for herself and friends in 1915, with help and influence from Paul Poiret. She was an inventor of clothes; her clothes were immediately considered avant-garde, individualistic, eccentric, yet easy to wear. Sportswear, coordinated beachwear, and matching bags and shoes characterized her early work. Unusual fabrics such as upholstery material and terrycloth for beachwear and zippers on ski ensembles were characteristic.
Schiaparelli was a contemporary of Chanel. They worked during the same period and both started out designing sweaters—yet these are the only similarities they shared. Schiaparelli's initial success came with her tromp l'oeil sweater featuring a knitted-in bow at the neckline. So influential were these sweaters that additional designs followed, which included belts, handkerchiefs, and men's ties, all utilizing the unique methods of Armenian knitters. The immediate success of her sweaters allowed Schiaparelli to open her own shop on the rue de la Paix, the most fashionable street in Paris in 1927. An amazing success, it was estimated that by 1930 her company's income was approximately 120 million francs per year and her workrooms employed more than 2,000 people. She introduced good working-class clothes into polite society and understood how snob appeal worked through pricing.
After the Great Depression, fashion was in desperate need of excitement. Schiaparelli was to answer this call—she shocked as well as entertained the public, believing good taste was less important than creativeness, outrageousness, and fun. It was her belief that women should dare to be different, and through wearing attention-seeking clothes, a woman became chic. Utilizing wit and shock tactics to arm modern women, Schiaparelli believed they would gain equality and independence.
The extraordinary and unusual were expected of Schiaparelli; she didn't disappoint. She was the first couturier to use brightly colored zippers, using them initially on sportswear, beginning in 1930, and reintroducing them in 1935 on evening dresses. She collaborated with fabric houses to develop unusual novelty prints and unique materials. When Rhodophane, a cellophane material, was invented, she made glass-like tunics. Schiaparelli was known for such fabrics as "anthracite," a coal-like rayon; "treebark," a matte crêpe crinkled in deep folds to look like bark; and fabrics printed with newsprint.
Her commissions of contemporary artists were legendary—they included Christian Bérard, Jean Cocteau, and Salvador Dali. Their collaborations led to such eccentric designs as the lamb-cutlet hat, the brain hat, the shoe hat, and the suit with pockets that simulated a chest of drawers. She also incorporated oversized buttons in the shape of peanuts, bumblebees, and rams' heads. Her basic silhouettes were often simple and easy-to-wear, but through witty embellishments on a variety of themes such as the military, the zodiac, and the circus, they became unique. Through the study of Tunisian methods of sewing, draping, and veil twisting, Schiaparelli brought Arab breeches, embroidered shirts, and wrapped turbans to Paris fashion, as well as huge pompom-rimmed hats, barbaric belts, jewelry, and the "wedgie"—a two-inch-soled shoe that would be a trend throughout the 20th century and into the next.
There was also a more cautious side to Schiaparelli, which appealed to the somewhat more conservative woman. For this woman, her severe suits and plain black dresses were appealing. To her tailored ensembles she added trousers and unconsciously influenced the mix-and-match sportswear concept which wasn't fully recognized for the next 40 to 50 years. She showed her trouser suits for every occasion—travel, citywear, evening, and sports. After the acceptance of these slimmer, more slender divided skirts as they were called, she took the next step and shortened them, thus creating the culotte.
Black and the combination of black with white were favorites of Schiaparelli. In 1936 she launched shocking pink, a brilliant pink somewhere between fuchsia and red, and it became the hallmark of her couture house. Schiaparelli's influence can still be seen today in the masculine chic looks, the surrealistic accessories, and ornate buttons. She broke down the walls dividing art and fashion and anticipated the 21st century's eclectic approach to designing. Elsa Schiaparelli remains an everlasting influence on contemporary fashion.

—Roberta H. Gruber;
updated by Nelly Rhodes
fashionencyclopedia.com

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"Because of all sorts of cloth have their motions, as well as Bodies, it must needs that they differ in themselves." -Lomazzo

Last edited by Whitelinen; 28-05-2007 at 01:34 PM.
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14-03-2007
  52
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she is simply amazing

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14-03-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhiteLinen
How on Earth did we not have a thread on her? I checked the spelling and searched three times and nothing came up. Well, I will start one for her then.
There's a thread on her, but it actually started out as a discussion on whether the house of Schiaparelli should be revived. It morphed into a thread about her. You can read it here. I guess you couldn't find it in your search, because the name of the thread is "The House Of Schiaparelli."

It's up to the mods if the threads should be merged, but I'd think it's nice to start fresh

Thanks for all the images and info you've posted, wish I could give you karma

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Last edited by DosViolines; 14-03-2007 at 05:02 PM.
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14-03-2007
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^maybe we can merge and change the title to "the legacy of schiaparelli".

i adore this lady's work so much. whilst everybody talks of Chanel(who was a rival indeed)i think elsa surpassed her when it came to creativity. i have alot of respect for both,equally,but i think think it was she that was much more inspiring. she was a magician.

and i adore her body of work,but the skeleton dress is one of my favourites.

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15-03-2007
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I thought there was a thread on her, but as nothing came up I thought I had hallucinated the whole thing... good to get to know about it now. This is why we need the sub-forum badly

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24-04-2007
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Thanks for posting all the clothes.

I remember in the late 1990s her Schiaparelli perfume ads created by Artist Marcel Vertes used to sell up to $100.00 and more on ebay! There was a big fan base at the time that went nuts collecting them all. They still sell well but not like they did then. I thought it was amazing.

The original ads appeared in all kinds of fashion magazines--like Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, and Femina--in the 1930s to the 1960s.

If you want to look at them check out ebay. I bet they still have some on.

CC

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25-04-2007
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Without a doubt, one of my all time favorite designers, and a remarkable woman.



from an article about the Surreal Things: Surrealism and Design show in the spring 2007 at the Victoria & Albert Museum.

"Elsa Schiaparelli was one of the first couturiers to use zip fasteners in her garments and both she and Charles James were paid by 'zipper' manufacturers to use and promote them. There are early versions of the zip but the design we know today was patented in 1913. Early zips were made of metal teeth but when the patent ran out in the early 1930s several companies began experimenting with producing plastic zips. "

vam.ac.uk

I haven't read it yet, but her autobiography, Shocking Life was published by the Victoria & Albert Museum in March 2007.

Marisa Berenson is her grand-daughter.

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05-06-2007
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thefrock

Attached Images
File Type: jpg FW_page10_clothes_04.jpg (80.3 KB, 18 views)

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And I am nothing of a builder, but here I dreamt I was an architect
And I built this balustrade to keep you home, to keep you safe from the outside world
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05-06-2007
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File Type: jpg EW-0752.jpg (208.9 KB, 11 views)

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And I am nothing of a builder, but here I dreamt I was an architect
And I built this balustrade to keep you home, to keep you safe from the outside world
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07-06-2007
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Quote:
1950 - 1955 Steel grey viscose rayon, black warp, white weft in plain weave.

Jacket : High round neck at back, narrowing to low V neck at front. Double breasted, fastening right over left with three pairs of large flat grey buttons. Long turndown collar and separate curved revers. Long sleeved. Pocket each side, lined with red artificial silk laid over extension of side back bodice. Bodice and sleeves lined with dark red artificial silk. Bottom of sleeves lined with grey artififical silk. Interlining padding bodice fronts below waist. Red button attached to lining inside right waist to fasten left side.
Skirt : Left side fastening with grey zip and hook and loop on waistband. Pocket each side. Grey hanging loop each side waistband.


manchestergalleries.org

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