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Antique evening gown or dress, ca. 1905. Off white moire faille with pale blue satin brocade, trims of blue chiffon, black velvet & ecru lace. Mid-length sleeves. Front closure with hooks and eyes. Petersham labeled "Beer * 7 Place Vendôme * Paris". Good condition and wearable size. A few flaws: underarm stains, stains on skirt and sleeves. The decoration is not included.
German-born Gustav(e) Beer (ca. 1875) was regarded as one of the most expensive couturiers in Paris at the turn of the 20th century and into the 1920s. Beer opened his couture house on the Place Vendôme in 1905, outfitting European royalty such as Empress Frederick of Germany and the Queen of Portugal. Over the course of his design career, Beer’s aesthetic would shift from the conservative yet extravagant S-Curve gowns of the Belle Époque into the increasingly relaxed silhouettes promoted in the 1910s, looking to Art Nouveau and Jugendstil design for inspiration. Beer is not remembered for innovation but rather for opulence in his designs, and his pieces are often described as sumptuous and overtly extravagant. Beer’s approach tended to be conservative, emphasizing exquisite construction and fine materials over daring designs.
Provenance from this dress: Dress likely belonged to Emily Johnston de Forst (1851-1942). In 1872 Emily Johnston married Robert W. de Forest (1848-1931). Both, Johnston & de Forest, were prominent New York City blue-blood families.
Bust: ~ 100 cm
Waist: ~ 88 cm
Front Length: ~ 145 cm
Back Length: ~ 175 cm