Book Piece 1962 Balenciaga Haute Couture Silk Sculpted Gown
The Balenciaga Haute Couture atelier opened in 1937, closed briefly from 1940 -1945 and then reopened until Cristobal's retirement in 1968. This gown was made in the Paris atelier for the 1962 season and its twin currently resides in the Balenciaga archives. A photo of the back of this same dress is in the book "Balenciga and Spain" and I have included it here. This gown is true Haute Couture from when Balenciaga himself was a member of the Chambre de commerce et d'industrie de Paris. Piece made during this brief period under Cristobal are very rare and this is an especially fine example. I am very pleased to bring such and important piece of Couture to you today.
The legacy of influential Spanish couturier Cristóbal Balenciaga, continues to today. He is often refereed to as "the Master of Couture" and rightly so. There is currently an exhibit featuring over 100 pieces of his work at the V&A and this gown could easily have been one of those examples. The construction is pure Cristobal and is highly sculptural in nature. The silk used is a heavy silk sating that allows for the precise lines. that you see. Wide straps sleeves sit just off the shoulder and highlight the neckline that goes across and under the collarbones. You can see ion the reference photo how this sits on a real girl. It curves around the bust and glides inwards for the waist. The hips curve outwards and the skirt falls to the floor in a gentle curve. The silk used is so rich in feel it seems to have an inner glow. Under this sculpted exterior lies a highly structured foundation garment. The interior corseting has all the things one looks for from couture of this time period. It is boned by hand with steel boning. It is a full inner corset with a complicated construction of elasticized fabric combined with built in cups that are covered in a silk net. This interior corset closes with a series of lingerie hooks and there is even an added a panel of soft silk velvet that is placed under the hooks and against your skin so you do not feel the hooks at all. The dress zips up over this and despite all of this interior work all you see on the exterior is that beautiful sculpted shape. Examples of his work are held in museums world wide and a gown in this condition and color is a rare find indeed. Excellent overall condition bit please review the description note below
Unlined with a full interior built in corset and a half skirt that helps to create some volume at the back. It is completely made by hand as the parameters of Haute Couture dictates. It closes with a back handset, fine painted metal zipper and the interior corset closes at the side with a series of lingerie hooks. Handset snaps are set to close the lower skirt over the zipper and to secure the long dropped bow into place. Haute Couture label and numbered tag underneath. There are some faint marks in the fabric around the waistline and some slight fold lines in the fabric here and there from improper, long term storage. Some rust marks in the interior corset and some torn seams and marks on the interior top bodice and just at the very edge of the seam on the exterior - all are photoed and everything is minor considering the rarity of this piece. It appears the inner hem was redone at a later date as the thread does not match anything else and looks like it was not done by hand. It was photoed on a size 2 dressmakers form and just fit so best for a zero - 2, or as a collectors pieces
Bust: 15" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 11.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 54" from shoulder to front hem, 56" to back hem
Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS
This garment has been professionally cleaned, pressed and is odor free. Thoroughly checked over before shipping, it will be ready to wear upon arrival.