PARIS: The House of Lanvin evolved from the creative force and remarkable energy of an extraordinary woman, Jeanne Lanvin. Her design career survived fifty-six successful and productive years.
Lanvin is the oldest surviving couture house, in near-continuous existence from 1909 through the present day. Her body of work includes millinery, children’s wear, haute couture, fragrances, furs, lingerie, menswear, and interior design among others.
The continuous public appeal and the youthful image of these couture creations are lasting aspects of Madame Lanvin’s career. At the heart of this book are key collections from 1909 through 1946, the year of Lanvin’s death. Original fashion illustrations, beading and embroidery swatches play a crucial role in demonstrating her intricate, creative, and innovative techniques.
The house of Lanvin is currently experiencing a period of great acclaim, emerging as a darling of the press, Hollywood, and the larger fashion community. With the most modern of efforts, Alber Elbaz, the current design director, is drawing from the rich Lanvin tradition to create an award-winning collection that at once evokes, reveres, and reinvents the intentions of its founder.
Alber Elbaz’s most recent collection for Lanvin was an inspired study in romance, fluidity, and, maybe most importantly, winning the hearts (and checkbooks) of every buyer and editor in town. His flowing gowns and intricately embroidered dresses were also celebrated for their ability to reference the house’s history while still moving very much forward. A new book by Dean L. Merceron, out next week, traces the ever-progressive history of Lanvin, from its founding in 1909 by Jeanne Lanvin up to the current reign of Elbaz, with a focus on the key collections from the first half of the twentieth century. The book is overflowing with images of gowns culled from the atelier’s archive, collectors, and museums, giving a visual history to one of the most influential labels in French fashion, then and now. Harold Koda, chief curator of the Metropolitan Museum’s Costume Institute, puts it best in his introduction: “Masterful old techniques come to life with contemporary relevance…the original spirit of Lanvin has been transposed to the present.” — Elle.com 10.2007
About the Author
Dean Merceron is an authority on 20th-century French fashion and is a contributor to the Encyclopedia of Clothing and Fashion. Harold Koda is Curator of the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Alber Elbaz is the current Design Director of Lanvin (2007).
Publication Date: October 23, 2007
- Hardcover: 370 pages
- Publisher: Rizzoli