I love to read for many reasons, but one reason is that a book often piques my curiosity about new places, new people, and new things. I can thank Tim Gunn’s Fashion Bible and my friend Catherine for my interest in the Callot sisters, four dressmakers who opened a couture house in 1895 that became well known for its beautiful fabric, designs, and embroidery.
The Soeurs Callot (Regina, Marie, Marthe and Joséphine) designed lingerie, evening gowns and day dresses made with antique fabric, beautiful silks, and lace. They were one of the first designers to use gold and silver lame. (Victoriana Magazine)
Their designs over the years varied widely – I love the silk pajamas and the bejeweled dress below. What are the odds of my finding a Callot Soeurs treasure at a Parisian flea market? Hmmm…
Dress, c. 1926. Gift of Mrs. Anton Hulman, Jr. Indianapolis Museum of Art.
Pleated silk chiffon, lace worked in gold thread, satin, ribbon. 1922 (made). Given by the Ranee of Pudukota. Victoria and Albert Museum.
Robe-tailleur, Callot Sœurs, Paris, 1910-1912
Taffetas jaspé, tulle mécanique, frange de passementerie, mousseline
Coll. UFAC, don Lindon, 1951. From Les Arts Decoratifs.
Evening dress, 1913. Purchase, Irene Lewisohn Bequest, 1951. Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Pajamas, 1926-1927. Gift of Miss Isabel Shults, 1944. Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Setting up the pattern for lace yokes. Paris. Callot Soeurs fashion design house. 1931. Photograph by Francois Kollar (1904-1979). Paris, Bibliothèque Forney. Paris En Images.
Presentation of models. Paris. Callot Soeurs fashion design house. 1931. Photograph by Francois Kollar (1904-1979). Paris, Bibliothèque Forney. Paris En Images.
Fitting. Paris, Callot Soeurs fashion design house, 1931. Photograph by François Kollar (1904-1979). Paris, Bibliothèque Forney. Paris En Images.