malcolm starr

One of Two Identical 1970s Malcolm Starr Red Zipper Front Coats w Applique & Braiding Detail SZ MED

This is one of two identical coats landing in the shop today. The only difference its that one is a medium (this one) and the other is a small. This is from the time period that Youssef Rizkallah headed the company. Youssef joined the Malcolm Starr label in 1969 and remained as the head designer until 1975. The years that Youssef headed the line are among some of my favorites and in particular his pieces that utilize quilting and patchwork, like these coats,  are truly iconic. Rizkallah was born in Egypt and studied at the Ecole de dessin appliqué and the Ecole des arts decoratifs in Paris. His designs seem to combine that sense of couture lines that he gained in Paris with the colour and vividness of his homeland. 

This is a wonderful piece that can be worn as either a coat or as a dress thanks to the zip front that completely opens. We were able to date it based on the very similar piece that was featured in the ad campaign for 1970. Which makes it a very early piece for his time at the label. The base of the coat is a red fabric that feels like a light wool that has a slight ribbed texture to it. The entire coat is detailed with a combination of a deep blue braiding and blue ric rac that follows the detailing and lines of the coat to emphasize the pattern and cut. Elaborate designs run around the hem and panels in the palest possible blue follow the lines of the coat. A floral patchwork is set around the hem and edged by the rib rack to create that fantastic design that you see. This anchors all the various parts of the design and gives a pop of contrast to the colour combination. The coat is collarless and it zips up the front. The shoulders are soft and the sleeves widen out to be full at their hem. The coat falls from the shoulders and widens out as it nears the hem. I took a shot of it laying flat so you can see the incredible shape that it has. It is quite full by the time it reaches the hem. Because it zips to close at the front and fully opens, you can wear this as a proper coat or you can wear it on its own as a dress, which lets it play double duty. It even has weights in the hem so that once on it falls perfectly in place and pockets that are hidden along those front seams. I just love that spectacular design through the body of the coat. It is so dramatic and like wearing art. I love it. Excellent overall condition with notes below

Fully lined in a hand set pale blue silk and closes down the front with an unpainted silver zipper. I see some faint yellowing, grubbiness to the bottom pale blue panel and maybe a touch of the same on the blue on the cuffs but I am being pretty picky there especially. Grubbiness to the inner lining around the hem and neck. Tagged a vintage Medium. 

Sleeves: 24"
Inner shoulders: 14"
Bust: 19" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 21" flat across from side seam to side seam
Hips: 26" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 58" from neck to hem

Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS-MED

 Item# DD4481

Reference Photo: "The Malcolm Starr All Starrs" Ad, 1970.

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