sybil connolly

1960s Sybil Connolly Pleated Linen Skirt

This skirt is a rare example of Sybil Connolly work and it appears to have never been worn, making it that much more collectible. What makes this piece even more interesting is that it is very similar to a skirt that is part of the permanent collection of the FDIM Museum in Los Angeles, recently featured on their blog. It is also very similar to one worn in an official White House portrait of Jacqueline Kennedy (see my blog post on that here). I want to share with you this excerpt from the FDIM blog entry, remarking on Sybil Connolly's techniques:

Sybil Connolly's trademark gowns required a tremendous amount of fabric. To construct one pleated evening dress required between 72 and 90 yards of un-pleated Irish handkerchief linen. After undergoing a secret pleating process, this initial yardage became 7 to 10 yards of slightly irregular, narrow linen pleats. Like the early 20th century designer Mario Fortuny, Sybil Connolly was very protective of her pleating process, swearing that it was a secret she would "carry to the grave."3

In her designs, Connolly usually oriented the pleats horizontally, covering the seams with self-fabric cording. The cords also lengthen the overall line of the garment, providing a counterbalance to the horizontal pleats. As Connolly tended towards solid colors, the stiff cording also provides a necessary visual contrast to the soft linen pleats.

This skirt is a stunning example of that technique. The workmanship and time spent to construct this is astonishing and it is a true work of art and a rare piece of fashion history. Mint, unworn condition.

Waist: 16" from side seam to side seam
Hips: 20" from side seam to side seam
Total length: 40" from waist seam to bottom hem

The skirt is fully lined in a matching red rayon and closes with a side painted metal zipper and hidden hook & eye at the waist. Comes with its original silk matte satin red belt that closes with hidden hook and eye. A very rare and historically important piece.

Modern Sizing equivalent: LRG

Item# S143

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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Please review all measurements carefully. More often than not, vintage garments do not fit any size category exactly. If in doubt, measure a garment of your own that fits and is a similar cut and compare it's measurements to the listed measurements below.