christian dior

Early 1960s Christian Dior Numbered Colifichets Crystal & Pearl Project Dress

The Colifichets boutique was found on the ground floor of the Dior Haute Couture atelier at 30 Avenue Montaigne in Paris. It allowed Dior to expand his clientele beyond his Haute Couture clients. The pieces were still made in house and to demi-couture standards. I found reference to the boutique as early as 1949 in article giving the history of when Dior conceived his first lipstick. That idea was conceived as a sort of limited-edition 'gift with purchase', and was sent to the most loyal clients of his Colifichet boutique as a Christmas present that year. This is a beautiful example of the workmanship coming out of the boutique. It is not perfect but still a very rare and important piece of Dior's early history.

The dress is made from a rich ivory silk that holds the shape well. The bodice is cut with a high V at the front and the back gently scoops to leave the upper back bare. The waist is set high just below the shaped and formed bodice and the skirt is cut to angle out as it nears the hem. The bodice has an intricate design done in a combination of crystal rhinestones, dangling drops, and faux pearls. The edges of the bodice are densely covered and all the edges are finished with dangling teardrops. Every piece is hand set and applied and you can clearly see the hand done work on the back of the fabric. The interior is fully finished with a boned and cupped inner corset that hooks to close independently under the exterior zipper.

The dress is far from perfect and is suitable for the collector as is, or for someone who would be willing to take on a restoration project. I note the following flaws: faint discoloration and staining scattered over the skirt. These might be lightened out by a specialist. They are faint and if you don't mind small flaws these could be considered negligible. On the bodice there are some missing tear drops and beads here and there. Not very many and a repositioning of some of the other beads and crystals would resolve this. Inside, some of the metal stays that create the boning are poking through at the ends of this silk pockets. Again a minor issue to resolve. The interior of the inner corset is otherwise very clean and unaffected. The real flaw is the staining under each arm. The arms would have to be re-cut. The good news is that the marks do not go terrible deep into the dress from under the arms so should be doable without completely compromising the dress. I have chosen to sell it as found for two reasons. One, the collector may wish it to be in its original, as found  state regardless of the flaws, and two, for the girl buying to potentially wear, it makes more sense to have the repairs done to fit her specifically.

It is fully lined in an ivory silk and part of the lining has its own hook and eye closure. The exterior silk closes with a back, painted metal sipper. The  inner corset closes with hook and eye. The tag is numbered. Please make sure to fully read the above paragraph before purchasing. This gown is sold as a final sale and as found

Bust: 15" flat across from side seam to side seam, removing the inner corset might give you another inch or two. The cups would fit up to a B I think
Waist: 11" flat across from side seam to side seam, removing the inner corset might give you another inch or two
12 to 21" flat across from side seam to side seam
Bodice: 12" from top of shoulder to lowest part of empire waist
Skirt: 41" from lowest part of empire waist to hem

Modern Sizing Equivalent: XXS to maybe a XS if inner corset was removed or altered

Item# DD3089

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.