Spring 1996 Jacques Fath Dress w Pink Organza, Green Stripe Waist & Full Yellow Skirt
Jacques Fath showed his first collection of just twenty garments in the spring of 1937. It was well received and he steadily built a strong clientele to become of of the busiest ateliers in Paris. The Fath label was shuttered in 1957 after Fath's death three years earlier. In 1992 the label was revived for a short period of time and Dutch designer Tom Van Lingen was charged with bringing the label back to life. He remained at the helm from 1992 to 1997. This gown is from his Spring 1996 collection and it may have been a custom piece. On the runway variations of it were shown that all had a tighter and more fitted skirt. This look draws heavy and gives a nod to the work Fath was doing in 1951 and I have included those reference photos here as well so you can see the homage to the label's origins. This is from the fabulous woman whose estate I have been working through and she had a love for a true ballgown skirt and this one is wonderful. I am very happy to have a couple of the shots from the runway show so that you can get an idea of how incredible the dress will be once on the body. It is gorgeous and the colours are the prettiest combination ever.
This dress is stunning. It is red carpet worthy and would make an amazing wedding piece for the bride looking for a non-traditional choice or as an alternative dress in a more extended wedding celebration. Can you imagine this at a garden themed event? It would be amazing. The dress is made from a combination of a pale yellow, pink and green and the fabrics that Van Lingen chose for each element is just incredible. The silk is made out of a textured yellow silk and the colour is even better in person then how it photoed. It is a clear soft lemon colour and you get more of the feel of texture when you see it in person. It is just heavy enough to hold the shape and structure of the dress but even with all of that fabric it is not so heavy that it is uncomfortable to wear. The shape and volume you see is held by built in underskirts and if you wanted to go even fuller you could easily add an additional crinoline. It has a full built in cupped corset inside the bodice so you don't have to worry about additional underpinnings. At the waist there is a wide band of a green and white striped silk and this circles all the way around you. The bust over that is a confection of soft pink textured silk organza. It has been gathered in to form a flower like covering over each breast and then it curves down and around the back for detailing. A single layer of the organza covers the shoulders and then curves down into little cap sleeves that end in another burst of the ruffled finish. The entire upper shoulder part is attached with a simple stitch all around the top of the bodice so I think that you could detach it quite easily if you preferred to wear this was a strapless dress. Or perhaps have a seamstress make it so it could attach with hidden snaps so you have the option of wearing it either way. The back of the dress is very dramatic. It is trained so that it flows out behind you in a dramatic swoop of fabric. The inside lining has a wide inner band of stiffened netting that circles the hem to help hold the shape of the skirt rather then have it just drag behind you. On the upper back you have the transparency of the organza and a slit that runs from the neck to the top of the bodice for a tiny glimpse of skin. All of those details, combined with that spectacular colour mix, make it one of the best gowns I have seen from this time period. And in person it has even more softness to the colours. It is just gorgeous. Excellent condition with a minor note below.
There is a full built in corset made from a pale pink silk in the bodice. The skirts are lined with a inner yellow silk skirting and there is a wide band of stiffened netting at the hem as mentioned above. There is an inner grosgrain waist stay that hooks to close. I see a small amount of grubbiness at the edge of the hem and it looks like there was a repair done along part of the seam of each arm at some point. Please see the three photos after the label shot. Tagged a size 2/34.
Shoulders: no defined seam
Bust: 16.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Seam under the bust: 14" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 12.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Bodice: 16" from top of the shoulder shoulder to bottom seam of the band at the waist
Band at waist: 5.5"
Skirt: 43" from bottom seam of band at the waist to front hem, 55" to back hem
Modern Sizing Equivalent: XXS-XS
Reference Photos/Video: (1-3) Spring 1996 Jacques Fath Runway. / (4) Sophie Malgat in Jacques Fath, 1951. / (5) Models in Jacques Fath, LIFE Magazine, 1951.
This garment has been professionally cleaned, pressed and is odor free. Thoroughly checked over before shipping, it will be ready to wear upon arrival.
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