Tagged: american high style

In Fashion: American High Style at the Brooklyn Museum.


Oh Those Sleeves! A 1969 evening dress by Madame Alix Grès, made from taupe silk paper taffeta. (Photos by C-M.)

I’m not someone who is known for her fashion sense (my entire closet is one long, jazz-like riff on jeans and sneakers). But that doesn’t mean I can’t drool over a beautifully-constructed frock when I see one. And the American High Style exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum, dedicated to chronicling the museum’s costume holdings, offered plenty to salivate over: Christian Dior, Elsa Schiaparelli, Cristobal Balenciaga, to name but a few. Of particular interest is the extensive collection of pieces by master cutter Charles James (1906-1978), whose Diamond Evening Dress (shown after the jump), made for heiress/philanthropist Dominique De Menil, is truly a wonder to behold.

Overall, this show is a winner — beautifully and cleanly presented (unlike its sister show at the Met, which is supposed to be a hot mess). The only bummer is that the curators decided to pipe in a lite music soundtrack of operatic ahhhhhs that seem to have been taken from a Disney musical (from the part of the film where the princess wakes up). It not only made me grit my teeth, it made me want to commit random acts of violence on small animals. My advice: if you truly want to enjoy this exhibit: pack an iPod.

The show is up at the Brooklyn Museum through Aug. 1.

Continue reading

Calendar. 05.06.10.


Butterfly Dress, 1955, by Charles James. Part of the exhibit American High Style: Fashioning a National Collection at the Brooklyn Museum, opens tomorrow. (Image courtesy of the Brooklyn Museum.)