Tuesday, June 7, 2016
One Shot: Jean-Phillipe Worth Ball Gown 1900-05
As a designer, Jean Phillipe had every bit as cultivated and grand a vision as his father had, and an even more refined eye for detail. The work done under his hand is some of the most sumptuous the ateliers ever turned out, and some of it's boldest, most extravagant gestures, were designed by him.
This magnificent, and beautifully balanced ball gown is a perfect example of his taste and skill. The house employed two dominant methods of design. One was to employ solid color materials and then embellish them with abandon, the other was to utilize hugely scaled woven patterns, keeping other decorative elements to a lower level. Here is the first of those recurring ideas, rendered in an ideal way.
As a final thought, the garment number label lists 66970, which should give you a good idea of just how well regarded Worth was at the time. Women of means from the world over patronized the House. To have clothing from Worth, was a supreme visual gesture.
With grateful thanks to the Metropolitan Museum of New York