john anthony

Extraordinary Spring 1984 John Anthony Couture Strapless Blue Sequin Detailed Netted Lace Dress

John Anthony is an award-winning American fashion designer best known for simple, elegant clothing with a strong sense of chic. His work veers towards minimalism, with sharp tailoring, striking evening wear being his signature. He is renowned for his cutting and tailoring. From the day that he launched his atelier in 1971 his design philosophy is a fusion of function and purpose. The function is his logical, wearable approach; the purpose, his pared-down ideas. As a designer, he considers it his job to make things easy for the customer. He designs with focus and a narrow palette for both day and night, so items can easily intermingle. He uses natural fabrics and is noted for contradictory daywear fabrics in his evening collections. In the early 70’s he was one of the first designers to promote the idea of easy-to-travel clothes that resist wrinkling. By 1976, he was showing soft, liquid separates in muted colours that became his trademark and received 2 Coty awards, one in 1972 and one in 1976, as recognition. His business was all done on a made to order basis. That means the majority of pieces you will find are a one-off, or if there are similar pieces, very few of each piece exist. This personal attention to each dress is clearly seen in the workmanship of his pieces. His work is very expensive and beaded pieces did, and still do, retail for over $10,000. His work is a personal favourite of mine and I am thrilled to begin to offer these exclusive pieces and samples that John pulled from his own archives. I have included a reference photo of Janet Jackson wearing a similar version of the dress that he made for her Today's Black Women cover in 1998. That design was based on this original piece from 1984. It is stunning

The dress is very light in weight and the fabric is absolutely beautiful. The innermost lining is a blue silk chiffon and then a blue net lace is layered over that. Then onto the are thousands of blue iridescent sequins that follow the pattern in the lace and cover the entire dress. This allows the dress to catch the light from every angle. The effect that it creates is stunning. The dress is strapless and the bodice is set on a curving sweetheart shape to emphasize the bust. The edges at the hem and bodice are done to follow the pattern of the lace and I love the touch of romance this gives to the dress. To wear the dress, the closures have been set down the front of the dress with a hidden zipper. Tiny little hidden set snaps are set to follow the edges of the lace and these snap into place over the zipper. So once you have it on there is no zipper line to break the eye. The snaps under the lace run to about the mid-thigh. This leaves a subtle slit under the overlapping sides. This gives you a flash of leg when you move or sit and it is very sexy. The lower hem is set on a curve so that it comes up slightly at the front and is longer at the back. The skirt is lined in a blue silk chiffon and this gives it a slight transparency in the light. I love the little rosette sitting at the side at the waist for the perfect finishing detail. It is a wonderful dress. Excellent condition.

Fully lined in a hand set deep blue silky rayon through the bust and a silk chiffon through the skirt. It closes at the front with a hidden set zipper and a series of hidden fabric covered snaps. Lightly boned through the bodice. Hand finished throughout. It appears to have been worn very little if at all. 

Bust: 16" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 13" flat across from side seam to side seam
Hips: 17" flat across from side seam to side seam
Bodice: 9" from the top of the bodice to waist
Length: 46" from the top of the bodice to longest point of the back hem

Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS-SML

Item# DD3831

Reference Photos: (1-2) Spring 1984 John Anthony Runway.  /  (3) Janet Jackson in John Anthony for Today's Black Women, June/July 1998.

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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