Exceptional Mid-1980s Paco Rabanne Haute Couture Velvet Beaded Caftan Dress
The early eighties are a time period often overlooked in the Paco Rabanne history but there are some lovely pieces that came out of this time period. This dress is definitely one of them. It is a Haute Couture piece and has been entirely made by hand. His entire brand was based on innovation Even in the 80s he was experimenting and developing new fabrics. This is a beautiful piece and a very wearable one as well.
This is a lovely dress whose fabric is phenonemal. The dress has a simple cut. It is cut fairly straight all the way from shoulder to hem and just widens out a touch as it nears the hem. This makes it very comfortable once on the body. The neckline is cut straight across and wide. Each sleeve is cut very wide with a slight flare as it reaches the end and you can see how this adds a beautiful line to the dress. The sleeves add movement and drama to the dress and really give it that caftan feel. To offset the coverage of the velvet there is a high slit worked on one side so that you get a flash of bare leg when you sit or move. The fabric is just beautiful. It is a deep deep burgundy red and the velvet is soft and plush. Worked into this are two large clusters of flowers. One on the bodice and the other near the hem. The fabric these inset is made out of an iridescent pink gold that changes colour as the light hits it. Tiny little gold coils and beads are then hand placed all around the edges for a 3D effect. You can see and feel the gold popping off if the velvet and it really is just an amazing detail. This is the type of dress you will only ever find in vintage and it is probably a one off. it has the feel of a runway sample to me. It is all done by hand but some of the seams seem basted and that is usually what you see with runway pieces. Excellent condition with a minor note below
The dress is partially lined through the middle and this partial lining helps to hold the skirt in pace where it wraps under itself with the way the skirt is constructed. The inner hem is extremely deep so it might be possible to extend the length of needed. Minor flattening of the velvet in places but that's normal with vintage velvet. Weights on the hem. It slips over the head to wear. Hand finishes throughout and hand finished inner seams
Sleeves: 26.5" to longest point
Shoulders: 16.5" and meant to drape down slightly past the natural shoulder
Bust-hips: 19" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 55.5" from shoulder to seam under the bust
Slit: 29" from seam under the bust to hem
Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS-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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