Original Fall 1997 Herve Leger Couture Lace & Bead Bandage Fitted Black Dress w Wide Straps
Leger worked for Karl Lagerfeld at Fendi and followed him to Chanel in 1983 when Lagerfeld took over there. In 1985 at the age of 28 Leger began designing under his own name for clients. His dresses were one of the stars of the nineties and were among the most coveted and iconic of the labels during that period of fashion. His bandage dress in particular were one of his strongest creations and the originals were only produced between 1989-1997. This dress is even more special as it is one of his couture pieces. A mannequin would be created based on the exact measurements of his client that the dress was made for and each is a one of made to fit that client exactly. In 1998 the company was sold to BCBG and the making of the bandage dress were halted along wth the dismissal of Herve from his self named brand. Dresses from this time period where he was making and designing the dresses himself are very rare and to find a couture one even rarer. It is a very special piece. I was very happy to find a version that walked the runway for the Fall 1997 show and the runway shots show you how it looks when in an actual body and the shoulders worn off shoulder like they should be
This dress combines that iconic striped bandage technique he used with a bias cut silk skirt and stunning lace and bead work. The bodice is made entirely using his famous bandage technique where elastic strips of fabric were sewn together to make girdle-tight foundation. The allows the bodice to mold and shape itself to your body and create that perfect hourglass feel. The bandage portion the dress runs from the neckline to just past the hips. The bodice was then covered in a soft, fine lace that allows the nude coloured elastic underneath to peak through. From a distance this gives the illusion that you aren't wearing anything underneath the lace. The lace is held in place by vertical banding of beadwork that are set on slight angles to further add to the illusion of shape. More beadwork runs around the neckline and over the straps and then again t the bottom where the bodice meets the skirt. The front is shaped to mold over the breasts and the straps are set wide. On an actual body these can be worn more off the shoulder to leave the collar bones completely bare. At the back the neckline scoops down to leave the upper portion of the shoulders bare. The skirt is set in under that and flares out around you to move with your slightest movement. I love this contrast between the very fitted top and the more flowing skirt. The silk used for the skirt is light in weight and has no lining so it really moves wonderfully. It is stunning and a fabulous example of his made to order couture work. This is a dress that really needs a body to come to life and once on it will blow you away. Excellent condition
Unlined and closes with a hidden set back zipper. Tagged a M. The fabric does have stretch and it can expand but does still stay tight and fitted with the elastic interior. The range of measurements given below are of it laying flat but it will potentially stretch to a couple of inches more.
Bust: 15-18" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 12-14" flat across from side seam to side seam
Hips: 16-18.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 54" from off shoulder strap to hem, approx 57" once on
Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS-MED
Reference Photos: Fall 1997 Herve Leger Runway.
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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