Designed by Callot Soeurs / Evening Gown / ca. 1910 - 1914Designed by Callot Soeurs
Evening Gown
ca. 1910 - 1914

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Creator Name: Soeurs, Callot
Creator Nationality: European; French
Creator Role: Designer
Creator Dates/Places: French, 1888 - 1937
Creator Name-CRT: Designed by Callot Soeurs
Title: Evening Gown
Title Type: Object name
View: Full View
Creation Start Date: 1910
Creation End Date: 1914
Creation Date: ca. 1910 - 1914
Object Type: Costume and Jewelry
Classification Term: Main dress-Womenswear
Materials and Techniques: cotton, silk, metal
Dimensions: L. at center back 55 1/2 in. (148.5 cm)
AMICA Contributor: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Owner Location: New York, New York, USA
ID Number: 1981.380.2
Credit Line: Gift of Jacqueline Fowler Costume Collection, 1981

In the Directoire revival, the waistline was raised in the manner of a century earlier, but with corsetting that had the vestiges of the monobosom. Perhaps even more importantly, the silhouette reflects Europe's examination of Eastern dress, the softness, raised waist, and lower bust stance suggesting 'ukiyo-e' prints and other Japanese style.

Attuned to the Orientalism of the decade, Callot Soeurs reined the silhouette into a cylindrical wrap, effortless in lingerie-weight fabric. Yet, for its innovations, the work of Callot Soeurs does not stint the couture's roster of technical skills. Here, sequins vary: some are punched into a filigree pinwheel, others are hammered flat; in some instances metal is overlaid onto faceted crystal. But even this ornamentation is not entirely for the pleasure of diversity, but for the calculated and magical effects of such varied surfaces seen in evening and candle lights.

Speaking of her training with Callot Soeurs, Madeleine Vionnet coyly commended its quality, saying, 'Without the example of the Callot Soeurs, I would have continued to make Fords. It is because of them that I have been able to make Rolls Royces.' Indeed, without Callot Soeurs' tunics and soft dresses of the 1910s and 1920s, Vionnet's innovations are unimaginable.

AMICA ID: MMA_.1981.380.2
AMICA Library Year: 2000
Media Metadata Rights: Copyright The Metropolitan Museum of Art

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