c.1958 Green Museum Held Balenciaga Haute Couture Suit
This wonderful Haute Couture suit is from the 1958 collection and comes from the closet of the original owner who commissioned it directly from the atelier. It's near twin is held in the collection of The Philadelphia Museum of Art with a slight variation on the skirt. Cristobal Balenciaga was known for his fine tailoring and sculptural approach to design and the restrained and refined lines of this suit showcase that aesthetic. Even Dior himself declared Balenciaga as "the Master of us all" and Balenciaga's impact on fashion cannot be underestimated.
The suit is made of an olive green, nubby wool that has an almost mohair finish to it giving it a very interesting texture. Cristobal was known for doing the fitting himself, from the initial muslin stage through to the final fittings which means that a couture suit such as this one, made during the years he was alive and headed the house, means that you have a garment fitted by the master himself. The skirt has a simple, straight cut that flares out at the hem for the slightest suggestion of an A-line cut. The jacket is cropped and cut to skim over the torso and suggest the curves of the body underneath. I love the small notches that sit at the base of each vertical seam - a tiny detail that adds to the couture feel. It has a matching fringed scarf meant to be worn jauntily around the neck. Together the suit is refined and proper and of perfect proportions. To own a piece of couture Balenciaga is truly to own a piece of fashion history and his pieces were worn by starlets and society girls, including Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn and many, many more. Good condition with notes to review below.
Entirely made by hand to Haute Couture standards. Both the jacket and skirt are fully lined in a hand-set green silk. Interior hand finished seams. Hand done buttonholes. The skirt closes with a painted metal zipper and hook & eye at the waist. The jacket buttons to close. This suit has the following notes for condition: there is shattering to the inner lining of the jacket - most significantly around the armholes with some small vertical shattering just starting in other places as well. There is light color loss to the tops of the texture bits on the buttons There is wear to the silk piping along the top of the skirt and an area of discoloration to the skirt on the exterior. Please review all photos. The number underneath the label is 65768. I have included detail shots of some of the interior hand work and flawed areas.
Bust: 19.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 18" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 19" from neck to hem
Waist: 12.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Hips: 19" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 24.5" from waist to hem
Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS-SML
Reference Photos: (1) Winter 1958 Balenciaga Suit from Philadelphia Museum of Art. (2) Princess Grace of Monaco wearing Balenciaga in Monte Carlo, 1960s.
This garment has been professionally cleaned, pressed and is odor free. Thoroughly checked over before shipping, it will be ready to wear upon arrival.