"Byzantine" Dress, Worth

  • Worth

  • Gift of the Duc de Gramont
  • 1904
  • Gold lamé silk taffeta, cream silk tulle entirely embroidered with beads, paillettes and gold metallic thread. Fur trim (modern recreation). Lining: silk taffeta, silk satin.
  • GAL1978.20.2
  • Palais Galliera, musée de la Mode de la Ville de Paris

Wearing a hat embellished with a diamond, feathers and sable, Comtesse Greffulhe wore this dress to the wedding of her daughter Elaine to Armand, Duc de Guiche, at the Eglise de la Madeleine in Paris on 5 November 1904.

This resplendent ensemble – it outshone the bride's – drew eulogies from Le Figaro-Modes and L’Art et la Mode. The cut and luxuriant, hieratic style of this masterpiece from the Palais Galliera collection earned it the epithet 'Byzantine'.

In his memoirs Paul Poiret claimed to be the creator of this dress – somewhat surprisingly given Comtesse Greffulhe's fidelity to Worth and to the presence of the Worth label. The embroideries were by Mati, on Avenue de l'Opéra.

Notice's author : Sophie Grossiord