Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Madeleine Vionnet...

Madeleine Vionnet was born on the 22nd June 1876 and died on the 2nd March 1975. She was a well-known and well-respected French fashion designer. She was named the "Queen of the bias cut" and "the architect among dressmakers", Vionnet is best known today for her elegant Grecian-style dresses and for introducing the bias cut to the fashion world.

Madeleine Vionnet by Pamela Golbin 18/1/13
In the 1920s Vionnet created the bias cut, a technique for cutting cloth diagonal to the grain of the fabric enabling it to cling to the body while moving with the wearer. She used the bias cut to create flattering looks, which she believed would help revolutionise women's clothing. She created designs that showed off a woman's natural shape. Her clothes were famous for accentuating the natural female form.

 Madeleine Vionnet by Pamela Golbin 18/1/13

She famously said: "when a woman smiles, then her dress should smile too."

Her clothing designs were very simple and involved a lengthy processes, including cutting, draping, and pinning fabric designs on to miniature dolls, before recreating them in chiffon, silk, or Moroccan crepe on life-size models. She used materials such as crêpe de chine satin to make her clothes; fabrics that were unusual in women's fashion of the 1920s and 30s.

In the 1920s and 1930s her clothing, took over haute couture in setting trends with her sensual gowns worn by such stars as Marlene Dietrich, Katharine Hepburn and Greta Garbo. Her vision of the female forms changed societies and the way women were seen and their duties. Although World War II forced her to close her fashion house in 1939, she took on the role of becoming a mentor to later designers and helping them understand the principles of elegance, movement, and style.

Her clothing has influenced many designers such as John Galliano, Comme des Garçons, and Issey Miyake. 18/1/13

18/1/13 12.00pm

Madeleine Vionnet by Issey Miyake and Betty Kirke (1 Nov 2012)
Vionnet (Fashion Memoir) by Lydia Kamitsis (24 Jun 1996)
Madeleine Vionnet by Pamela Golbin (1 Jun 2009)

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