The glass reflected Maxim’s well-known silhouettes; famous faces smiled at their images in the mirrors where still pass the shadows of the "Belle Epoque." Admire left a dress designed by Givenchy with a black bodice, embroidered with jet which elegantly opposes a large skirt of pink cyclamen silk.
In these very stressful times a little elegance is very necessary. And what could be more elegant than haute couture lighting up the finest restaurants in Paris? So sumptuous it's hard to imagine anyone ever dressing this fine to go to dinner—though they really did. It is with a certain sadness that I attend meals at fancy restaurants or attend the ballet, as one rarely sees anyone dressed up anymore. Even in places where it should be expected and celebrated, my people-watching desires (i.e. dress-watching) are constantly let down. Luckily we have editorials like this, as well as classic movies, to fill our hearts with some glamour. And what glamour! Givenchy, Dessès, Grès, Nina Ricci, Laroche, Carven, Lanvin Castillo—it's a roll call of the mid-century French greats.
Photographed by Philippe Pottier for L'Officiel N.465-466, 1960.
(My French isn't perfect so please excuse any mistakes in the translation.)
Friday at Maxim's demands evening dress. At the time of great exits in December, the sparkling dresses take a shine again in the typical setting of this famous restaurant so full of so many personalities. Guy Laroche embroidered sequins on this dress of white silk mousseline.
By Jean Dessès this beaded sheath on a shell of mousseline.
More than exquisite and refined, it is an atmosphere of charm and supreme elegance that appeals when you first walk in Chez Lasserre where the salons of the famous restaurant offer you the best of the world to enjoy a more delicate cuisines of the capital.
This is where this beautiful dress from Nina Ricci will seduce you in the graceful majesty of its soft train. Pink salmon brocade.
A dress, also of silk brocade in green and black, was chosen by Grès to make this dress off. The jewelry is from Van Cleef and Arpels.
At the Tour d’Argent, where the famous duck au sang is eaten with the greatest wines of Bordeaux and Burgundy, but even more we admire Notre-Dame and the city that sleeps with him. The white dress is by Grès of jersey.
Michel Goma chose a pristine crepe to mix with satin for this soft dress. The jewelry is from Boucheron.
Reviving the charm of a quaint and exquisite time the Grand Véfour, in the shadow of the Palais-Royal, has risen to the highest rank of culinary art due to the most delicate gourmet cooking by Raymond Oliver. In this context, surrounded on all sides by gently tarnished mirrors, the beauty of women by happy contrast is beautifully enhanced, especially when it is embedded in these wonderful evening gowns.
Jacques Heim, white muslin dress with embroidered bodice.
By Lanvin Castillo, pink silk dress. Blouse with short sleeves entirely embroidered with silver.
Temple of gastronomy, Taillevent, close to L’Etoile, welcomes to its salons always beautifully flowered, elite gourmets. Evening dresses are in this context at their most refined expression. A dress by Jean Dessès of red lace from Calais, with train effect.
A Carven dress in tulle and Calais lace. Jewels by Cartier.