Design House: House of Dior (French, founded 1947)

Designer: Christian Dior (French, Granville 1905–1957 Montecatini)

Date: fall/winter 1948–49

Culture: French

Medium: cellulose acetate

Credit Line: Gift of Bettina Ballard, 1958

Accession Number: C.I.58.7.8a, b


Vogue (September 15, 1948) noted the extraordinary neckline of this dress, specifying the "plunging neckline with side-slanted fold." The asymmetrical gathering of fabric swoops around the neck in the same manner as the 1948 skirts but closes low in the front, exposing an expanse of shoulder. Dior consistently favored scarflike effects to frame a bare shoulder line. Here, he did not have to place linen or other materials in the décolletage; he simply used the natural bunching of silk to serve as an adjustable "modesty" for the deep neckline.