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Coat

Coat

Coat

Mid 1920s

Silk, trimmed with wool

With its ‘fur’ collar, cuffs and hem, this coat gives a deceptive impression of warmth. It is in fact made from unlined, lightweight black crepe machine embroidered with bands of deep chevrons, characteristic of the bold geometric designs favoured at the time, in fashionable shades of brown, gold, dull pink and beige. Its cut is simple and tubular, the emphasis upon the deep collar, cuffs and hem made from dark brown wool hooked through the crepe to form a dense pile. The collar could be worn down as here, or turned up against the face – in combination with the deep-crowned hats of the time creating a sense of mystery and drama. The dominance of collars and cuffs can be seen in a hand-coloured fashion plate of around 1924 in the John Bright Collection (see Additional Images). This illustrates two suits, one boldly striped, both with oversized cuffs and collars, the latter worn up or turned back, and available from the Berlin department store, Gerson. Founded in the mid 19th Century by Hermann Gerson, it offered a luxurious shopping experience in a brightly lit, magnificently designed and decorated building where both made up and made to measure garments were for sale. A photograph of 1927 shows a vendeuse and two house models demonstrating outerwear to a seated customer in Gerson’s model salon. (See the image from the private Kessemeier collection on the homepage of Berliner Stadtmuseum: https://www.stadtmuseum.de/veranstaltungen/visionaere-der-mode-und-der-raumkunst)

Additional Images

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