Wednesday, 14 November 2012

The Little Black Dress

This blog is dedicated to the Little Black Dress. We've just uploaded a new collection of black cocktail dresses to our online boutique ranging in size from UK 6 to 18.

View this dress in our online store here

I remember the first time an LBD really caught my attention on screen: it was the moment Mrs Robinson seduced Benjamin Braddock in 1967 movie The Graduate.



This little clip is a masterclass in passive-aggressive seduction and Anne Bancroft looks every inch the predatory cougar. Her black and metallic cocktail dress looks as stylish now as it did over 40 years ago. 

The power of the Little Black Dress lies in its versatility and timelessness. Almost every woman has at least one in her wardrobe and some of my customers will only wear variations on cocktail-length black dresses. They know what suits them and enjoy being able to style their look up or down depending on the occasion. 

I've picked out some beautiful photographs of LBDs from the last 90 years, from Coco Chanel to Roland Mouret. We also have a dedicated LBD category in the Juno Says Hello online store - scroll down for a selection of pictures from our  new collection.

In 1926 American Vogue called the LBD the 'Ford' of dresses - referring to its democratization of style.  Any woman could own one, and it could be worn almost anywhere.

Chanel, c.1920s

Ginger Rogers

Wallis Simpson 

We have a beautiful 1930s black silk velvet dress in stock at the moment, complete with dress clips - very similar to the design worn by Wallis Simpson. To view in our online store click here.

Vogue, c.1940s

Anne Gunning

Fashion editorial from 1947

Dolores del Rio

Lisa Fonssagrives

Anne Patchett by Nina Leen, 1949

Dorian Leigh

Photograph by Clifford Coffin

Dovima




Marilyn in Korea, 1954

Vera Miles 


Dior, 1955

Grace Kelly in To Catch A Thief

Jessica Ford in front of a Chrylser, 1957

Anita Ekberg relaxes in her green room

Suzy Parker, 1959

Harper's Magazine, 1960

Elizabeth Taylor. This is my favourite cocktail dress of all time.


When Breakfast at Tiffany's was released in 1961, the black cocktail dress became the go-to look for stylish Manhattan socialites. 


Holly Golightly's classic LBD inspired a wave of fashion photography...


Jean Shrimpton

Don Draper's wife Megan performs at his birthday party in a risqué black mini dress. We sold something very similar last year:


In 1967 Catherine Deneuve starred in Belle de Jour, wearing clothes designed by a then little-known Yves Saint Laurent. Her ice-blonde hair and black shift dresses captured the sinister side of frustrated housewife Séverine. 

Catherine Deneuve in Belle de Jour

This simple design was a clear inspiration for L'Wren Scott's 'Headmistress' dress from her Spring 2009 collection. This LBD was one of the most popular dresses on the red carpet that year. 


Paris-based vintage fashion dealer and connoisseur Didier Ludot published a book in homage to the little black dress in 2001. Deneuve appears on the cover. 


The LBD is reinvented by designers season after season. Here is a selection from Valentino, Alexander McQueen, Roland Mouret, Dior, Pucci and Michael Kors...








Celebrities love the look too - the LBD can be demure or minxy, depending on how you style it

Kate Bosworth

Dita von Teese

Kate Moss

Michelle Obama in a vintage Norman Norrell dress

Sarah Jessica Parker

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley

The LBD category in our online store has several new additions, and we have many more in our Kings Cross studio. Please get in touch if you are looking for something in particular. This 1960s tassel dress looks amazing in movement - to view in our online store click here



This black jersey dress is studded with tiny rhinestones, which sparkle as you walk. 

To view in our online store click here

This 1950s cocktail dress has a mesh bodice with embroidered daisies.

To view in our online store click here

This black taffeta dress with double hem is a complete show-stopper:

To view in our online store click here

Complete the look:

Gucci Rose Gold Diamond Onyx Earrings


Roger Vivier 'Rose 'n Roll' heels

Charlotte Olympia Feather Clutch 

For a full selection of our recommended accessories, please view our LYST page. The next five online orders include a miniature bottle of Guerlain's 'La Petite Robe Noire' scent - to start browsing our collection of black cocktail dresses click here



Black cocktail dresses are not just for parties. One of the most unusual scenes featuring a black evening dress is from Luc Besson's cult classic La Femme Nikita, made in 1990. Nikita is a young female assassin recruited to work for the French government. Never has a LBD worked harder than in this notorious restaurant scene:

4 comments:

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