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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Elsa Schiaparelli: Jackets

Until Online
Metropolitan Museum of Art / New York / Art

Reeling from the First World War, the 1920s was an era of simplified fashions—bare arms, dropped waistlines, and shapeless, uncorsetted cuts. The look came to be known as la garçonne, or flapper, for its boyishness, and was embraced by Coco Chanel. At the end of the decade, reconceiving masculinity’s place in women’s wear, the Italian designer Elsa Schiaparelli debuted a line of structured jackets that broadened shoulders, raised and trimmed the waist, and seduced the eye with bodices intricately embroidered and wittily embellished. These now iconic pieces embody Schiaparelli’s many influences, from the Rococo to Neoclassicism to Surrealism. This virtual exhibition demonstrates the impact of the Schiaparelli cocktail jacket on fashion and art, an influence that continues today. —C.J.F.

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