Thursday, June 11, 2009

Donald Brooks - Fashion Innovator

The following photos were taken in Tunis in 1967 and appeared as part of a several page advertisement introducing the Kodak Instamatic Camera. All fashions are by Donald Brooks.

Donald Brooks began his design career in the mid 1950's working for a junior sportswear line called Darbury. Darbury was a relatively inexpensive line, but Brooks made the clothing look great by using unexpected fabrics for his designs. In 1959, Brooks moved to Townley, where he replaced the late Claire McCardell, and was able to use more expensive fabrics to design elegant clothing for daytime and luxurious fashions for evening.

After winning two Coty awards, Brooks opened his own company in 1965. With his own label, Brooks' signature look started to appear. He loved to use bold patterns and striking color combinations. He continued to be a style innovator and won another Coty award in 1970.

Brooks closed his business in 1973, but he continued to design with various licensing agreements, including loungewear for Maidenform. By the 1980's, Brooks produced custom garments, which he sold privately from his town house on East Seventieth Street in New York.

Through the years Brooks also designed costumes for the theatre, film, and television industries, for which he was nominated for several awards.

Brooks was cited by the New York Times as one of “the three B’s of fashion” alongside Geoffrey Beene and Bill Blass. He was one of Jackie Kennedy’s favorite designers.

Couture Allure is pleased to offer this iconic graphic print coat by Donald Brooks from the late 1960's.

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