"Originality, plus simplicity of line is the secret of chic."
Schiaparelli wearing her own design: a shoe-hat (black wool, winter 1937/38)
Elsa Schiaparelli (1890–1973) was an Italian fashion designer. She ruled the fashion world of the 1920's and 30's along with Coco Chanel. Like Chanel she retired soon after WW2. One of her most famous deaigns is Wallis Simpson's lobster dress which she created in collaboration with Salvador dali. She contributed to fashion articles from time to time, in several magazines/newspapers during the 30's. In 1937 she gave her 7 rules on how to dress chic.
Wallis Simpson wearing Schiaparelli's famous Lobster dress
schiaparelli's seven rules
On how to dress chic:
1. simple, beautiful lines and good (quality) materials
2. spotlessly clean clothes
3. be tidy, take good care of every garment
4. in color matching garments
5. dress to suit the occasion
6. keep a small stock of matching clothes
7. spend to buy the very best quality of accessories (shoes, hats, bags) you can afford
1934 spring inspiration: the third and fourth models from Schiaparelli: blue wool suit and white cotton blouse with linen lace ending on the jabot, black wool coat with silver fox scarf
The key is to invest in small stock, but matching clothes, made of quality materials. Nowadays it is easy to forget the importance of quality, when we can buy new, cheap clothing for every season. Looking at myself I prefer to invest in just one or two better pieces (on sale) than filling my wardrobe with tons of cheap and 'fashionable' clothes each season. On the downside, I must say, I looooove colors, and little details so often forget to buy clothes that I can wear in different combinations.
I don't follow the newest fashion trends, and prefer to wear my own, authentic mix of vintage inspired and modern day garments, and I certainly invest in good quality accessories. How about you?
Schiaparelli blouses from 1938: pink Vyella fabric with brown leather buttons, crochet hat, Vyella jacket blouse with chinese collar and leather buttons.
did you know that...
...Vyella fabric was a twill weave blend of 55% merino's wool and 45% cotton in the early 20th century? Later they modified the fabric mix in 80% cotton and 20% wool. In the early years, the fabric’s unique selling point was its combination of lightness and fashion, whilst providing warmth and durability.
1939 beautiful felt hats, left a cocoa-brown forward jutting beret from Schiaparelli
Source newspaper image: AWW through trove