Monday, November 15, 2010

Kasper for Joan Leslie - 1975

"I'm constantly refining, improving, interpreting…trying to capture the essence of the times without being trendy. But from whatever source my ideas come from, I always keep in mind that lively, energetic, smart looking woman who is my customer. She's my motivation and my ultimate inspiration." -Herbert Kasper

Herbert Kasper attended Parsons School of Design and then moved to Paris where he worked for the couture houses of Jacques Fath, Christian Dior, and Marcel Rochas. He returned to New York in the early 50s and designed for Arnold Fox. He was awarded a Coty in 1955. In 1965 Kasper joined the firm of Leslie Fay and became the designer for their Joan Leslie division.

In 1975, Saks Fifth Avenue joined with Kasper, Trevira, and the new Loews Hotel Monte-Carlo in a several page advertisement. Princess Grace of Monaco attended the dedication of the Loews Hotel in November of 1975. The hotel is still in operation today as the Fairmont Monte-Carlo.

It is interesting to note that while these dresses are all made of Trevira polyester jersey fabric, they were quite expensive. While we consider polyester an inferior fabric today, it was very popular in the 1970s. All dresses shown in these ads are by Kasper for Joan Leslie and all are of Trevira Star© polyester jersey. Saks Fifth Avenue had Kasper Boutiques in their stores where these dresses were sold.

Above, stripe and polka dot print makes an evening gown with cut-away shoulders and matching scarf. Sold in 1975 for $160 (about $650 in today's dollar.)

Red print wrap dress with matching scarf. Sold in 1975 for $140 (about $568 in today's dollar.)

Solid black dress with matching shawl. Sold in 1975 for $144 (about $585 in today's dollar.)

Lavender cocktail dress that wraps and ties in back. Sold in 1975 for $92 (about $374 in today's dollar.)

A short dress with full sleeves and matching scarf in the same fabric as the dress at top. Sold in 1975 for $122 (about $495 in today's dollar.)