Antique & Vintage Dress Gallery




#4827 - c. 1870's RARE GASTON COURTOIS Costumier, Paris Louis XIII Fancy Dress Ball or Theatrical Costume Vest!  I went crazy when I found this piece in a re-sale shop in California.  It was hiding between some 1990's St. John Knits!  I wonder how the heck it got there!   I also wish I had the history of the piece.  The exterior is grand, as you can see, a light beige silk brocade with braid trim, crochet buttons and light blue silk taffeta bows.... but the stamped labels inside are almost even more exciting!!  Stamped Gaston Courtois, Costumier, Paris. Then a second stamp with the address of 72, Rue d'Auteuil... and perhaps Ville de Paris (very hard to read!). Yet another stamp even lighter and nearly impossible to read, and a few other markings... and then ... oooh... there is a pencil mark inside which reads "Louis XIII".  SO, this was a theatrical or fancy dress ball piece depicting the era of King Louis XIIIth, reigning in France from  1610-1643.  SO... from about the time of Shakespeare, who died in 1616.  That will give you perhaps more of a visual concept of ah... let's say Gwyneth Paltrow in "Shakespeare in Love". Excellent condition with minor exceptions... one button is missing (I will move one of the buttons from the unseen bottom ones to the midbust level), the light blue paperthin taffeta bows are stained and tearing, and there is a bit of tearing of the paperthin silk lining on the interior collar, one spot on the cotton interior... and the fact that one of the bows is missing.  Still.... in remarkable condition for such a rare piece!!!  The dating of the piece is difficult, but the buttons scream 1870s, so that's my assumption. Get out that puffy shirt and breeches, or modernize with skirt and leggings! Measures: 38" bust, up to 36" waist, 19-25" long from shoulder to hem.

SOLD - but on display in Museum Category for Research/Display