geoffrey beene

Spring 1969 Geoffrey Beene Well Documented Green Print Hostess Dress

Geoffrey Beene was one of the great American fashion designers and he was recognized for both his artistic and technical skills. He launched his label in 1963 and a piece from his very first collection landed the cover of Vogue. A Coty award followed a year later and in 1984 the Council of Fashion Designers created the annual Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement award in honor of Beene's fashion legacy. This dress is from his Spring 1969 label and is very well documented. Versions of it were photoed with Beene himself and a variation of it was featured in a Harper's Bazaar editorial that season. A variation in the same print is also held at the Bullock Museum

This dress is a wonderful representation of just how wonderful his work could get. In the Harper's caption for the dress in a different print, it was referred to as a 'long silk redingote dress, proud as a robe fit for an empress. The elegant proportions and billowing skirt, emphasized by taut lines of banding and billowing sleeves'. I could not describe it better. The color is a brilliant blend of a bright spring green with those wonderful bands in a deep navy that run down the front of the dress. The bodice is plunged and fitted, while the sleeves long and slim. The waist is set high and it hooks to close there with a zipper hidden in the folds under the seam. Below the waist the printed silk continues and falls to the floor in a cascade of green and navy banding. It is incredibly full with yards of fabric are used in the skirt. When you move you really get a sense of its fullness. I love that how those front bands curve inwards and the waist and flare out to follow the widening line of the skirt. It is incredibly chic and a very collectible piece of his work from this time period. Excellent condition with a note to review below

The skirt is fully lined in a white silk organza  with an edging of white lace at the hem to finish. The bodice is lined in a layer of the same fabric as the exterior. It close with low zipper at the front waist and hook & eye above that. Each sleeve has a zipper set at its cuff. The inner skirts lining has many small holes and deterioration. It is still sound and this of course makes no impact when on. The blue banding has spots where the top shiny layer has rubbed off. The dress looks unworn so I think these are storage issue sand natural degradation of the fabrics chosen from time.

Note that the upper bodice is very tiny fitting despite the measurements below due to how it is cut. This is on a dress form that is a size 0-2, it might work on a narrow bodice 4

Sleeves: 22"
Shoulders: inset seams 14.75
Bust: 16" flat across the back from side seam to side seam
Empire Waist: 13" flat across the back from side seam to side seam
Hips: open
Bodice: 11" from shoulder to high waist seam
Skirt: 44" from waist seam to bottom hem

Modern Sizing equivalent: XS-SML

Item# DD3431

Reference Photos: (1-2) Geoffrey Beene with models, March 24 1969.  /  (3) Geoffrey Beene Hostess Ensemble, 1969 from the Bullock Museum Collection.  /  (4) Photo by Bill Silano for Harper's Bazaar, May 1969.

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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Please review all measurements carefully. More often than not, vintage garments do not fit any size category exactly. If in doubt, measure a garment of your own that fits and is a similar cut and compare it's measurements to the listed measurements below.