Dressing Up, Dressing Down

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1986 wedding dress (2002.27)
2007.40 Marc Bohan 1964

Traditionally, brides have chosen to wear the most elaborate and expensive outfit that they could afford, and this is still the case today, so that the most "dressed up" showy occasion in many women's lives is their wedding day. However, it is only in the last 150 years or so, and in Western Europe, that they have almost invariably chosen white or ivory.

Marc Bohan was appointed chief designer at the Dior couture house in 1960, following the sudden departure of Yves St Laurent, and he remained in this post until the early 1990s. The pink suit below has a Dior label for 1964 when Bohan had only been designing for the House for a few years. During his long period, at Dior, Bohan was celebrated for creating elegant, refined and understated garments in marked contrast to high-profile glam figures like Versace, and in establishing Dior's reputation, he secured a solid future for the house. Special occasions like balls or weddings provide a staple for couturiers, and this dress was especially created by Bohan for his Creative Design assistant in 1986. It is a fairy-tale, meringue-like ensemble, obviously taking a backward glance to the Emmanuels' celebrated 1981 wedding dress for the Princess of Wales. It is made of cream silk taffeta with a contrasting pink sash and bow.

Full item descriptions:

"wedding dress" [2002.27], Marc Bohan at Christian Dior, Paris
"suit" [2007.40], Marc Bohan at Christian Dior, Paris

Related Themes:

Wedding Dresses
Christian Dior