Showstopping 1987 Loris Azzaro Black Strapless 'Flame' Dress w Flaring Skirts & Shoulder
Loris Azzaro launched his label in 1967 and quickly defined his trademark looks with colour, ornate beading, sequins, daring cut-outs and avant garde ways of defining the body. Some of the most beautiful women in the world wore his clothing including Marisa Berenson, Raquel Welch, Jane Birkin, Sophia Loren, Brigitte Bardot and Tina Turner. It was a label that defined sexiness and had a certain French flare that women world-wide loved. By the eighties he was experimenting with volume and proportions and new fabrics that at the time were all cutting edge. This is a killer example of his work during this period and I also have a similar version on the shop in a red if the black one is not bold enough for you. I have dated this to 1987 after we found a reference photo of a model wearing an Azzaro dress with a very similar shoulder treatments. I love it
This dress is a statement piece that will turn every head when you walk into a room. It is so bold and dramatic. The bodice is hand draped into soft rounded gathers. It is constructed to follow the curves of the body from the top of the neckline to below the hips. For the body of the dress he has used a black stretch jersey that has a touch of a sheen finish to it. Inside is his signature black strapless underwire bralet that is sewn into the dress for support. The bodice is shaped into a low sweetheart curve and the gathers run horizontally down the body. Vertical hand done seams were then added all the way around to give the gathers a slight scooped feel. This ensures that they don't add bulk tp you but are simply there to emphasize your curves underneath. The low set skirt is made out of a metallic black textured silk that is set over layers of built in under skirting. The fabric of the lower skirt is placed to give the effect that it is wrapped and fanned around you. On each outer side the panels of the skirt lift up and away from the dress. These suggest flames in their shape and the colour. The same fabric and flame-like effect is then used to create a fan of fabric on one side of the bodice and this flares out dramatically up and over the front portion of the shoulder. It is very dramatic and OTT. In person the fabric has a richer and more textured feeling then how it photoed. Excellent condition.
Fully lined in a black silk with a built in bra though the bodice that hooks to close separately. It closes at the back with a painted metal and nylon zipper. The interior bodice is boned. Layers of tulle and silk underskirts under the low set skirt. The flame/fan detailing on the bodice has wire inside to hold it up. It would be easy to add additional wire or stiffening inside if you wanted it to really hold even taller then it does now. Hand finished throughout
Bust: to 16.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 13" flat across from side seam to side seam and the inner waist stay hooks slightly smaller then that
Hips: to 17" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 52" from top of bodice to hem
Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS-SML
Reference Photo: Model in Loris Azzaro, L'Officiel No. 734, September 1987.
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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