Early 1970s Geoffrey Beene Boutique Red Plaid Holiday Silk Taffeta Dress
Geoffrey Beene is one of the great American designers and I actively look for his work, especially the earlier pieces from his Geoffrey Beene Boutique days. The Boutique label was introduced in 1967 as an high end ready to wear label that was an alternative to his couture pieces that he had been producing since his self-named label launched in 1963. It was replaced in 1974 by the Beene Bag label, a more affordable RTW line.
This dress is wonderful and you cannot help but think of the holidays when you see its bright red, green and blue plaid. The fabric is a fine silk taffeta and that choice of fabric helps to give it the wonderful full skirt shape that you see. There are no crinolines under the skirt. The volume you see is achieved by the fabric alone and the way that it is set into the waist. I have put it on the mannequin with the buttons and zipper at the back. I have seen a version of this dress styled the other way around and I think that you could wear it either way depending on how it sits best on you. The way I have done it leaves the front with a more simple and sleek feel and the back feels more elaborate and detailed. The neck is high with a black silk ribbon that you can tie as you wish. A panel of the plaid silk sits almost like a cape over the shoulders. Under that are slim cut sleeves and the waist nips in with another long black silk ribbon to accent it and pick up on the tie at the neck. The skirt billows out under that and widens as it falls to the floor. It has a wonderfully formal feel to it with its austere cut, but this is perfectly balance by the festive feel of the silk. Excellent condition with a couple of minor notes to review below.
Fully interlined with a black silk netting through the bodice and skirt. It closes with a combination of a painted metal zipper below the waistline and hidden set snaps under the glossy black buttons above the waist to the neck. Note that the zipper sticks part way down. I have photoed how low it goes. It won't budge past that point but is otherwise fine. There is one tiny nick on the skirt and there is a nick out to he silk at the neck on the side. Both are minor and stable. Please review all three provided photos after the label shot.
Bust: 19" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 13.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Bodice: 15" from top of bodice to waist
Skirt: 43.5" from waist to hem
Modern Sizing Equivalent: SML-MED
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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