Elegant boudoir robe from the House of Worth, ca. 1900. The antique morning dress is made of green velvet. It is closed in front with hooks and eyes. Big sleeves, which reach to the elbows. They are decorated with a wide (original) lace, as well as the long collar. The waistline is shaped into a V at the center front and is gathered in rows to form a fitted waist. Light green decorative stripes on the upper arms and on the back. The wearer must have been a tall and strong woman. The antique robe is very well preserved. The collar lace is loose in a few places and has to be sewn on again. It has a few small holes. The sleeves might have been changed. The original seam lines are still visible. Both underarm seams show some repairs and loose stitches. The lace on the right sleeve has come off the sleeve in one place. With a few stitches it can be sewn back on. The original silk lining has been - professionally - completely replaced. It was worn out; but it is still enclosed with the dress. In this course the Worth label was reattached. Unfortunately it is torn. On the back of the label you can read the manufacturer number 26618. A similar hexagonal label is available at the Chicago History Museum (attached to a coat). In this museum you can also see a antique wrapper by Worth. The decoration is not included. Museum deaccession.
Charles Frederick Worth was the designer who dominated Parisian fashion in the latter half of the nineteenth century. The designer opened his own firm with a business partner in 1858. Worth’s designs are notable for his use of lavish fabrics and trimmings, his incorporation of elements of historic dress, and his attention to fit. While the designer still created one-of-a-kind pieces for his most important clients, he is especially known for preparing a variety of designs that were shown on live models at the House of Worth. Clients made their selections and had garments tailor-made in Worth’s workshop. Although Worth was not the first or only designer to organize his business in this way, his aggressive self-promotion earned him the titles “father of haute couture” and “the first couturier.” By the 1870s, Worth’s name frequently appeared in ordinary fashion magazines, spreading his fame to women beyond courtly circles. With his talent for design and promotion, Charles Frederick Worth built his design house into a huge business during the last quarter of the nineteenth century. His sons, Gaston-Lucien (1853–1924) and Jean-Philippe (1856–1926), took over their father’s business following his death in 1895 and succeeded in maintaining his high standards. Jean-Philippe’s designs in particular follow his father’s aesthetic, with his use of dramatic fabrics and lavish trimmings. The house flourished during the sons’ tenure and into the 1920s. The great fashion dynasty finally came to an end in 1952 when Charles Frederick Worth’s great-grandson, Jean-Charles (1881–1962), retired from the family business (source: Jessa Krick, The Costume Institute, The Metropolitan Museum of Art).
Waist: ~ 80 cm
Bust: ~ 99 cm
Front Length: ~ 152 cm
Back Length: ~ 175 cm