Feb 18, 2015
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Lanvin retrospective coming soon to Paris

Feb 18, 2015

The Palais Galliera, in close collaboration with Lanvin's creative director Alber Elbaz, is honoring one of France's oldest surviving fashion houses in a new exhibition, opening next month.

Jeanne Lanvin joins Azzedine Alaia, Cristobal Balenciaga, Madame Grès and Madame Carven on the Palais Galliera's guest list of celebrated couturiers.

"Maharanée", gouache on paper (1925). Just one of the fashion illustrations on display with vintage Lanvin designs from the Palais Galliera and Lanvin Heritage fashion archives | Photo: Patrimoine Lanvin (300)

Opening on March 8, this first Parisian retrospective devoted to Jeanne Lanvin will feature over a hundred designs from the Palais Galliera and Lanvin Heritage fashion archives.

At the exhibition, visitors can admire Lanvin's haute couture hallmarks: intricate embroidery, topstitching, twists, spirals, cut-outs, 18th century style dresses -- slender bust, low waist, ample skirt -- contrasting with the tubular line of Art Deco with its black and white geometrical patterns, the profusion of ribbons, beads, silk tassels and crystals. As event sponsor, Swarovski lends a little sparkle to the retrospective, which runs until August 23.

Nadja Swarovski, Member of the Swarovski Executive Board, commented: "We are honored to partner with the Palais Galliera in supporting the first retrospective dedicated to Jeanne Lanvin, one of the greatest figures of Parisian haute couture.

"Swarovski was founded in 1895, just six years after Mme Lanvin established her house, and she used crystals to adorn the luxuriously embellished evening gowns which became her trademark.

"This inspiring exhibition pays tribute to the skill, inventiveness and creativity of a great artist who captured and expressed the spirit of her time, and celebrates over 125 years of extraordinary fashion heritage which continues to thrive under Alber Elbaz."

Like Coco Chanel, Mademoiselle Jeanne began her career as a milliner in 1885. Marguerite, Lanvin's only daughter, became her primary source of inspiration and the starting point for her fashion career. In 1908, Jeanne Lanvin began making children's clothes -- some of which are on show at the exhibition, like the lace and organdy rosette embroidered dress that she created in 1925.

The following year, she branched out into Young Ladies' and Women's apparel. That same year, she joined the Syndicat de la Couture, the designers' union, and entered the closed world of French fashion houses.

Lanvin later introduced bridal fashion, lingerie and fur ranges, as well as interior decor and sportswear. Then in 1926, she launched her first menswear line.

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