Fall 1973 Karl Lagerfeld for Chloe Quilted Bodice Silk Dress & Scarf
The quilting technique used on this dress is distinctive and it was this feature that allowed me to find the date of the collection. We tracked down a photo of Karl receiving an award in 1973 and just behind him is a model in a dress from that years collection that uses the same quilting as we see on this example. This matches what I was told about the purchase date form its original owner as well. It is these collections during the years between 1969 and 1975 that we still see heavily influence the modern bohemian feel of Chloe today. Examples of his work during this time period are held in museums around the world and are rare finds.
This dress is wonderful. In person it is even better then how it photoed as you really get the sense of the raised areas of the print and the exceptional treatment to the silk in applying that print overall. The cut is simple but sexy with a wrapped feel to the bodice and a long skirt that falls to the floor. The dress is made from a very fine, light bias cut silk dyed to a pastel turquoise. Onto the silk is a floral design that appears to be hand painted. It depicts beautiful blue blossoms swaying in tall grasses. These circle the entire hem and travel almost up to the hips at the highest points of the design. On the bodice they wrap around the entire dress and detail each side of the collar. The design on the bodice is quilted with a slight padding underneath to give it added dimension. The neckline is dipped into a V at the front and the waist narrows in but is left slight loose and easy. The skirt flows to the floor from there and gradually widens out as it nears the hem, allowing the design to be shows off. It came with its matching, extra long, scarf that has the same print on both ends and is made from a silk chiffon in a shade darker then the dress for a slight contrast. I placed it slung around the neck here but you could wear it a number of ways. The dress is in overall great condition but does have a small note to review below.
Fully lined in a matching pale turquoise silk chiffon through the bodice and a silk through the skirt. It closes with a side painted metal zipper. There is a slight yellowing under each arm and the fabric shows signs of coming away from the seam - on one side this is just a teeny 1/4" area and the other is about 2". Maybe some areas of the tiniest bit of fade here and there on the fabric but the fabric is hand dyed so this could be a natural variation in color. These are so rare that even with these small defects this is a rare find and easily wearable with care. The color is best shown in the closer photos.
Bust: 16" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 14" flat across from side seam to side seam
Hips: to 21" flat across from side seam to side seam
Bodice: 14.5" from top of bodice to waist
Skirt: 43.5" from waist to hem
Scarf: 106" x 21"
Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS-SML
Reference Photo: Karl Lagerfeld & Models, November 1973 in Krefeld, Germany.
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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