Friday, June 15, 2012

Claire McCardell Dress - 1956

Spring, 1956.  Claire McCardell teams with DuPont for this full page ad.  McCardell designed this tattersall check dress in a 65% Dacron/35% cotton batiste fabric.  In case you didn't know, Dacron is DuPont's registered trademark for polyester.

But what I want you to notice here is the wonderful things McCardell does with a simple check fabric that you would associate more with a man's shirt.  Look how she turns the bodice on the bias so the stripes run diagonally.  The skirt front is cut on the straight of grain.  So is the button placket that runs the full length of the dress, the bow at the neckline and the sleeve cuffs.  She then pleats the front of the dress and adds fullness at the back of the skirt.  In short, McCardell takes a fabric that could be boring and turns it into something wonderful.