- Coco Chanel
(c) David Hamilton
Jonas Dovydenas - Iron worker, Chicago, 1969
Brian Duffy - Queen Magazine, 1965
Madame Grès dress, photographed by Jeanloup Sieff, Paris, 1980.
Grace Kelly on holiday in Jamaica, photographed by Howell Conant for Life, 1955.
Katharine Hepburn, photographed by George Hoyningen-Huene, 1934.
Dennis Hopper, Untitled (Female Backside), 1964.
Inès in Dior, photographed by Jeanloup Sieff for Elle, Paris, 1995.
Tina Leser Mexican cotton shirt and denim jeans, photographed by John Rawlings for Harper’s Bazaar, 1951.
A cute, teenager outfit of turned-up, denim jeans and striped cotton shirt epitomizes the freshness of American fashion after the Second World War. Tina Leser was among the new wave of designers unique to American culture who concentrated on sportswear as fashion. Her clothes, designed for a manufacturer (until 1952 when she formed her own company), were informed by everyday shapes such as play-suits, sarong dresses, smocks, swimsuits and shrug-on jackets, but they were almost always influenced by a more formal aesthetic, as is evident in the picture shown here. Leser’s mother was a painter and the designer studied art, painting, design and sculpture in Philadelphia and Paris. Leser moved to Honolulu and opened a boutique in 1935, moving to New York in 1942. During the 1950s she designed cropped and harem pants before any other designers; she is also thought to have been the first designer to make dresses from cashmere.
—Phaidon Editors, 1998
Angelica Bell in the garden at Charleston, early 1930s.
Hattie Carnegie evening dress, photographed by John Rawlings for Vogue, 1945.
Tina Leser playsuit, photographed by Louise Dahl-Wolfe for Harper’s Bazaar, 1949.