Wednesday, 30 September 2009

An ad, in the February 1956 Harper's Bazaar.

This is the same coat that was worn by Princess Grace when she arrived in Monaco to marry Prince Rainier. Also part of this ensemble is a dress, which is not seen.

Judith Balaban Quine, bridesmaid to Princess Grace, talks of this coat in her book 'The Bridesmaids'. To quote 'Grace and I had gone shopping in New York. Though we had very different taste and completely different looks, each of us was partial to the American designer Ben Zuckerman. We had made individual visits to his showroom and then gone there together. We bought not only woolen suits and coats but also silk suits, satin coats and his new daytime spring coats of lightweight silk woven like gabardine. Two weeks earlier, when Rita Gam had married, recalling that we had purchased some duplications from Zuckerman, we had called each other before the wedding to make sure we weren't wearing the same outfit to the wedding. Yet it had slipped my mind to check about the arrival in Monaco. I imagined Grace would wear an outfit that had been custom-designed for the occasion, not just something 'off the rack' from Zuckerman. Now here I was, not four feet away from her, wearing a different hat, but a coat that was identical and distinctive- princess-shaped, small-collared and tied just under the bust with a thin bow of the coat fabric.'

From 1951, a white coat belted with a matching white sash.

In 1951, Ben Zuckerman was 'bringing back the natural waistline'. The majority of his suits and coats that year featured belted or sashed waists. Also featured were ensembles featuring pea coats with matching dresses, cotton suits, and Chanel-style boxy suits. The colour of the season at Zuckerman was white.

Sunday, 27 September 2009

From the 1 October 1967 Hartford Courant -Chic Clothes make Elegant Scenes.

On the left- a black and white tweed suit, bound with a swish of black fox, Adolfo II's conical velvet hat, and above-the-knee shiny black boots.

On the right- the costume of the hour is an ensemble of bold grey and white check coat with a slim grey dress. The cockade rosette chin strapped hat is by Emme.

From 1961, a pink Zuckerman suit in homespun wool with big crochet buttons. Also in Navy. $225.  This suit was sold at G. Fox & Co, of Hartford, Connecticut, which was a department store opened in 1847 and shut in 1993.

The suit is highly reminiscent of the suits worn by Jacqueline Kennedy during her time as first lady. Mrs Kennedy favoured suits with 3/4 length sleeves, large buttons and soft shoulders, all seen in this suit.

Saturday, 26 September 2009

From the 17 September 1952 New York Times. 'Winnies Awarded by Fashion Critics.'

The top prize of the Fashion Critics Awards, the bronze 'Winnie' statuette, went to Ben Zuckerman for his 'impressive contribution to beauty, distinction and originality to coat and fur fashions.' Other awards went to Karen Stark for Harvey Berin, and Stanley Wragge of B.H. Wragge.

The above outfit was shown at the awards. It features a three piece costume combing a two-piece suit of sheer French blue wool topped by a flowing box coat of black and blue tweed lined with the sheer blue wool of the suit.

From the 27 September 1962 New York Times.

Dorcas Hardin, right, wears a white moire dress, part of ensemble by Ben Zuckerman.

Dorcas Hardin was the owner of a boutique in Washington DC. She opened her store in 1954 and carried designers such as Pauline Trigere, Galanos, and Ben Zuckerman, who at that time were only available in New York. Ms Hardin was known as the Doyenne of Taste and Elegance and notables such as Jacqueline Kennedy shoped at her store. In 1975 she closed her store, stating that she no longer cared for the fashions of the day. She died in 2006.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

My latest Zuckerman- a royal blue tweed jacket featuring lovely gold tone buttons and a velvet collar.

The jacket, which was likely part of a suit, was retailed at Sara Fredericks, a boutique that carried only the finest names in fashion. Her store in Palm Beach had neighbours that included Hermes and Gucci. She also had stores in Boston and New York. Miss Fredericks ran her stores until her death in 1986.

Photos courtesy of JackieSpicer

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

From a 1952 magazine featuring prominent New York women wearing American fashion. 

'Color turns on all the stops- and everyone will be seeing red. Straight-curve artist Ben Zuckerman, winner of Fashion Critics' 'Winnie', makes heavy-jersey costume, worn by Denise Lawson-Johnston. Curved cardigan is choice of many best-dressed Americans because it looks lean but is still feminine.'

Denise Lawson-Johnston was an editor at Vogue during the 1950's until her marriage to Rene Bouche.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

My latest Zuckerman, a coat from the 1950's.  It features 4 buttons and 4 pockets and is made from a fuzzy boucle material.

The coat was sold by Frederick & Nelson, Seattle, a department store opened in 1890 and which closed in 1992. At the time this Zuckerman coat was sold, the store was well known for its high end merchandise.

Photos courtesy of MadMoneyTwo.

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

A truly lovely 1950's Ben Zuckerman coat in black silk shantung. It features raglan sleeves, a nipped waist and the skirt of the coat is heavily interfaced so that it holds its shape. The buttons are large and quite heavy.

This coat still has its original tags, and a price of $125 which I believe dates it to the early 1950's.

All photos courtesy of CoutureAllure Vintage.