Schiaparelli and Thirties Fashion
Manchester Art Gallery, Mosley Street, Manchester, M2 3JL
Elsa Schiaparelli (1890-1973) is celebrated for her creativity both as an artist and as a fashion designer. Her love of bold designs led Chanel to question her skills in fashion, calling her ‘that Italian artist who makes dresses’. This is not untrue as she had a flair for memorable ‘artistic’ clothes, which were popular with flamboyant clients – women such as Marlene Dietrich or Wallis Simpson (Duchess of Windsor). She is certainly one of the most celebrated fashion designers of the middle twentieth century, and one of the few outstanding women couturiers.