Thtre de la mode

ADAD reader Jenny G. (in addition to saying such good things about ADAD that I blushed, best here in the steel and glass ADAD world headquarters tower) reminded me of the Thtre de la Mode. I had heard about it a couple years ago, but it hadn’t percolated up to the top of my brain now that I allow myself to think of nothing but dresses for half an hour every day. (Not that I wasn’t thinking of dresses at least that much before ADAD, but now I don’t feel bad about it.)

Anyway, here’s what Jenny said about it: “It’s an outstanding collection of miniature dresses, separates, and accessories put together in 1944 as a way to save French haute couture at the end of the war. I saw parts of the collection in a museum and it was unbelievable! tiny stitched shoes, hats, and of course dresses all made to fit small wire mannequins and placed in amazing sets. They even had couture underwear!”

And here’s what Amazon said about it, in the blurb for the book Thétre de la Mode: fashion Dolls: The Survival of Haute Couture:”Harnessing the romance of the world of fashion and high art, this fascinating story of a collection of miniature mannequins describes the birth of Thétre de la Mode, the theater of Fashion. full of stars such as Robert Ricci (Nina Ricci’s son), filmmaker Jean Cocteau, and other members of the 1944 haute couture industry, the story follows 237 miniature fashion dolls through their epic trip of Europe and North America, bringing fashion, elegance, and charm into a war-torn world. also included are new color photographs of the mannequins, the reconstructed sets, and close-up details of clothing so sewers, designers, and fashion mavens can appreciate the creativity of Paris designers at the end of world war II.”

(The collection is housed at the Maryhill museum in Washington State. Or, you know you could just purchase the book on Amazon. Or pick up the Viewmaster reel. I might get a Viewmaster just to get that reel!)

I love the Thtre de la Mode, not just because of the pretty pretty dresses, but because of what it says about the significance of beauty. And, I think, if half-starved people after WWII could take some time to care about dresses, why shouldn’t you?

Thanks, Jenny!

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