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Woman's dinner dress

Summer or Fall 1939
Designed by Elsa Schiaparelli (Italian (active in France), 1890–1973)

Object Place: Paris, France


Center back (dress): 142.87 cm (56 1/4 in.); Center back (slip) 44 in. (111.8 cm)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Silk, acrylic; plain weave (paired warps and wefts), embroidered with synthetic pearls, glass beads, rhinestones and metallic pins

Not On View


Europe, Textiles and Fashion Arts



a) Orange crêpe dinner dress embroidered with scattered paired keys with pearls, beads, rhinestones, and metal thread. Puffed short sleeves, see-through pearls lattice through sleeves and around neck, embroidered bands around neck and sleeve edges made with pearls, beads, and rhinestones. Orange plastic zipper closure at center back and left side. b) Orange silk plain weave (crêpe de chine) slip with peach colored silk chiffon shoulder straps. Label: “Schiaparelli, 12 place Vendome, Paris, Automne 1939” “Made in France” (in dress) “85 Nicole” (in slip). According to “Shocking! The Art and Fashion of Elsa Schiaparelli,” by Dilys E. Blum, this dress dates to the Summer 1939 collection.


Purchased by the MFA at auction from George Costopulos Auctioneers, Woburn, MA, March 7, 1999.

Credit Line

The Elizabeth Day McCormick Collection, by exchange