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Art + Fashion 1950’s Style

Ivy Nicholson + Le Soliel Rouge in Marc Chagall’s Venice studio.

So much is said about Coco Chanel’s contributions to women’s fashion, but did you know that CLAIRE MCCARDELL was an early 20th century fashion designer responsible for defining women’s sportswear in America?

Claire was the first designer to use zippers, to put spaghetti straps on evening gowns, to design pedal pushers, strapless swimsuits and mix and match separates, to popularize ballet slippers and to design a version of the wraparound dress that she called the “popover”.

This editorial first appeared in Life magazine in 1955 featuring Claire’s art-inspired dress collection. With Chagall, Dufy, Leger, Miro and Picasso as inspiration, Claire created these painterly dresses and asked famed photographer Mark Shaw to capture each dress in the artist’s studio that inspired it.

The result was a brilliant smash-up of art meets fashion 1950’s style.

mccardells4Betinna Graziani with Pablo Picasso in Cannes.

mccardells3Anne Gunning with Fernand Leger in Paris.

mccardells2Jacky Mazel in Raoul Dufy’s living room in Nice.

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