One of the most intriguing aspects of fashion is its ability to transport people, whether it is to another era or another mindset. What we put on each morning can define how we feel about ourselves that day and how we want to interact with the world. Fashion allows us to mold ourselves, put on a costume, and live a fantasy. This blog is primarily about using styles and trends of the past to transport ourselves today.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

"Caravan of Carven:" A Vintage Design House goes Modern

1960's Carven dress
The House of Carven was established in 1945 in Paris, France by Carmen de Tomasso, a woman who renamed herself, Madame Carven. While her background was in interior design and architecture, Carven cultivated her interest in designing clothes due to of all things, her own height! A mere 5' 1," Carven found it challenging to find clothes that fit her small figure and used her design background to problem solve in fashion. She created clothes that lengthened the figure, maintaining an interest in the budding apparel category of Sportswear, that was new to the women's market at that time. 

Carven Collection, Spring 2011
I am in love with these voluminous shorts!!
Guillaume Henry, the current designer for the House of Carven, faces the challenge of  following Carven's aesthetic, while re-interpreting her vision of sportswear in a modern age. The Carven website describes him as "the guardian of the heritage of the Couture years," creating "chic, feminine, and pared-down fashion, free from ostentation."
The silhouette of his collection is vastly different from the 1960's design showed above, but captures a casual ease to sexiness, symbiotic with the French, yet with a sophisticated edge to sportswear. 

Vintage Carven
(photo taken from paperdollgirls)
Carven's muse was a "woman who was free and unshackled by convention," as she offered accessible luxury that followed with "Parisian chic."

Vintage Carven
photo taken from paperdollgirls

Vintage Carven
photo taken from paperdollgirls
Vintage Carven
photo taken from paperdollgirls

Didier Ludot is a vintage couture clothing store in Paris that features Carven designs.

Here and below are some of my favorite looks from Guillaume Henry's Spring 2011 Collection. His concept was "Classic student gets lost in the halls of the Louvre," inspired by "travel, without getting too literal, [and] built on nerdy, collegiate chic with proper tailoring." -Henry

Modern Trenchcoat with a vintage vibe and an collared dress with handkerchief hemline

Yay poofy short and French Minnie Mouse shoes! Even though the shoes are much more elegant that Minnie Mouse, that's what they remind me of...
The Blouse on the left reminds me of a western shirt.

The drapery is reminiscent of the statues at the Louvre, while the cutouts, and negative space make the clothes modern.


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