Pochoir Venetian Ladies

One of the joys of our work with vintage fashion graphics is encountering the assurance and brilliance of many of the major artists of the art deco era. Designers like, Georges Lepape, George Barbier, Andre Marty, Umberto Brunelleschi and Eduardo Benito, seem never to falter in their mission of presenting women at their most graceful moments.

But, through the years, we have occasionally been struck by imagery where the lady does not seem to be at ease in her finery. There is, I believe, a concern (far from mere carelessness) to insinuate a dimension of haute couture usually hidden away but revealing , if pressed, malaise far more modern than the bulk of blissfulness the trade expects.

Our first display of Carnival-in-Venice extravagance shows a rather underwhelming output of preening (in headwear that was a mistake) which exacerbates their not being well-prepared for the occasion, leaving them looking like spoiled children. Hopefully, in other contexts, they might show some poise. But what they’ve shown us, unequivocally, is that legendary experience is not primarily about material wealth.   




Lots of wonderful wild creatures lost their lives without inducing these figures to be more than petulant in realizing they have nothing on the ball.





Is this a Paris street or a junior high lunch break?




vogue- june1-1935

“Why did I let them sell this hat?”




Vogue may 15 1935

A flood of Angst spoiling everything!




Vogue may 15 1935

Something is making her want to be somewhere else.





Vogue may 15 1935

A fantastic gown. The title is “Floating.’ But the reality is “Sinking.”




Vogue  march 15 1936

The fabulous Marcel Vertes, observing that big-statement couture so readily dribbles down to small-statement bitchiness!




Vogue  march 15 1936

The Schiaparelli ensemble seems to have sapped all the life out of her!





Overstated, and she knows it!



tci-aug-1915-bognanco-back copy

She’s on tap to provide deluxe mineral water, but her facade tending to the otherworldly gives her the bearing of offering poison!




An over-designed ensemble leading to a rather frozen state-of-affairs.



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