1961 Ferdinando Sarmi Strapless Yellow Floral Print Silk Chiffon Dress
Ferdinando Sarmi was an actual Italian Count and started his design career working for the Elizabeth Arden couture salon during the 1950s. In 1959 he ventured off on his own and launched his label. He designed for just over a decade before closing up shop. During those ten or so years he was known for his evening wear especially. The fabrics he chose were often opulent or very difficult to work with. This dress is very similar to the one photoed for Vogue in 1961, just with a different fabric design.
I love this dress. The volume through the skirt is expansive and the fabric choice is wonderful. Using the silk chiffon for the dress gives it a feeling of lightness and fantasy as it floats around you once on. You can get a sense of just how much movement it has in that wonderful photo for Vogue. The silk has a hint of transparency to it that gives it an interesting visual effect when the floral design falls over itself as the silk moves. The bodice is cut strapless and fitted and the silk there is gathered across the bust. The waist is accented with a large deep green silk bow at the front. From there the skirt gently widens to a beautiful fullness in a cascade of silk. It is very light and airy feeling when on but inside the construction is immaculate with a fully boned corseted foundation to keep it perfectly in place. I love the romantic feel of the floral print that covers the dress and the soft pastels are wonderful. Excellent overall condition with notes to review below
Fully lined in a pale yellow silk through the skirt and the bodice is finished in silk with an inner corset made of a cotton net. It closes with a back, hand set painted metal zipper. Hand finished. Fully boned inner bodice. Made to demi-couture standards. There is a watermark in some areas down the front and there are repairs and grubbiness to the hem in areas. Because of the amount of fabric through the skirt you would never notice these once on. Please review the photos after the label. Marked well below what it would be otherwise regardless
Bust: 16" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 13" flat across from side seam to side seam
Hips: to 20" flat across from side seam to side seam
Bodice: 6.5" from top of bodice to waist
Skirt: 45" from waist to front hem, 40" to back
Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS-SML
Reference Photo: Model on left in Sarmi dress, model on right in Scaasi, Vogue, February 1961. Photo by Bert Stern.
This garment has been professionally cleaned, pressed and is odor free. Thoroughly checked over before shipping, it will be ready to wear upon arrival.