Jackie Kennedy's Notes on Contemporary French Designs, to Inspire Future Oleg Cassini Designs
Two double-sided pages torn out from a contemporary French fashion magazine annotated with 30+ words in the hand of First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy (1929-1994). Jackie's notes would inform the subsequent designs of Oleg Cassini (1913-2006), Jackie's exclusive fashion designer, for Jackie, here referred to in Oleg Cassini studio pencil inscriptions as "Mrs. K." Jackie has provided commentary for two evening gowns by Christian Dior and Paul Balmain, and also a coat. In rich color as well as black and white. Expected wear, including folds, wrinkles, and isolated staple holes. Else very good. Each page measures 9.375" x 12.625". Provenance: From the personal property of the Estate of Oleg Cassini.
Jackie has selected a Greek-inspired dark pink evening gown by Christian Dior with fabric from Bianchini-Férier, the French textile manufacturer originally established in 1880. The dress is described (translated) as "…an evening dress in 'Nineveh' [city in ancient Assyria] red, with a profoundly low-cut bodice". Above this, Jackie has written: "This material OK / in this pink + gold - or / green + gold - It might / be nice to have 2 blouses - / 1 gold - + one colored like this one - ".
On the reverse of the second page, Jackie has starred the description of a Pierre Balmain evening gown, and written the word "material". The First Lady also underlined the following sentence (translated): "[The dress] is in gold lamé and silver cloqué [a jacquard type fabric] [called] 'Starclock' from Bucol". On the second page recto, Jackie has starred a magenta three-quarter length overcoat with a strap tie at the bodice and inscribed it "CH".
Oleg Cassini designed 300 outfits for "Mrs. K" between 1961-1963. Cassini was selected to become Jackie's "Secretary of Style" because he had a concrete vision of what Jackie's clothing would look like, and more importantly, what it would represent. Her evening gowns, day wear, suits, coats, hats, and accessories would create a distinctive "Jackie look" that would mark the reign of the new "American Queen."
Cassini noted in "A Thousand Days of Magic: Dressing Jacqueline Kennedy for the White House" (New York: Rizzoli International Publications, 1995): "Jackie reminded me of an ancient Egyptian princess--very geometric, even hieroglyphic, with the sphinx-like quality of her eyes, her long neck, slim torso, broad shoulders, narrow hips, and regal carriage…I wanted to dress her cleanly, architecturally, in style. I would use the most sumptuous fabrics in the purest interpretations…I was proposing a new look, a new concept, my interpretation of how Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy should appear in her role as First Lady…[I] told her that she needed a story, a scenario as First Lady. " (p. 15-18)
Cassini's vision of Jackie coincided with her own, and the two successfully collaborated to set major worldwide fashion trends. In Jackie's wardrobe, you could find all the classic elements of 60s mod--A-line dresses in bright colors and bold patterns, strapless gowns with elbow-length gloves, tailored suits, fur-trimmed coats with oversized collars, buttons, and pockets, and of course, pillbox hats.
This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.
WE PROVIDE IN-HOUSE SHIPPING WORLDWIDE!