The event: Opening Night for “Les Annés 50, Fashion in France 1947-1957,” at the Palais Galliera, the Museum of Fashion for the city of Paris.
The exhibition: Beginning with
Described on the walls as dresses for garden parties, restaurants, small dinners, important evenings, grand galas, dancing, vacations, the beach and more, the fashions give viewers a glimpse into the lives of the women who patronized the haute couture houses back then.
The background: Olivier Saillard, director of the Palais Galliera, said he felt it necessary to follow last year’s Azzedine Alaia show of contemporary fashions with “another one completely dedicated to the history of fashion in the 20th century.” He noted that this era saw a great transformation in fashion, noting that in 1946, France had more than 100 couture houses. Only 60 houses remained in 1952, and that number dwindled down to 36 in 1958. “Then in the 60s, it’s time for ready-to-wear,” he said.
Quote of note: “This was the perfect time for haute couture, as you have all the names in the 1950s: Givenchy, Chanel, Dior, and the very young Yves Saint Laurent and Karl Lagerfeld, and more,” said Saillard. “The stars must have all been in alignment to make this the most beautiful decade of fashion.”