This summer sale is truly a showstopper, consisting of not one, but two once-in-a-lifetime collections from both ends of the infamous Kings Road of 1970s London: the Celia Birtwell archive and the collection of the first lady of punk, Jordan. However, this sale also contains exquisite Edwardian gowns, twinkling cocktail dresses from the golden age of couture, mind-boggling Japanese fashion and everything in-between. Here are our favourite hidden gems of this sale:
My favourite thing is lot 300, the John Galliano hound's-tooth checked suit, Spring-Summer 1995. It has all the hour-glass curves of a 50s Dior but with clever lapel/pleat detail that was so contemporary. It’s elegant, ladylike and extremely wearable as well as being a collector’s piece. Madonna wore a similar short-sleeved version of this suit in her 'Take a Bow' video, October 1994.
I am in love with lot 272, the Jean-Charles de Castelbajac teddy bear jacket. Surprisingly comfortable to wear, it is a wonderfully sculptural piece with all the teddy bears gazing at you from jaunty angles around the jacket. Like a cartoon fur-coat, it epitomises de Castelbajac’s originality and wit as a designer. Like Moschino, he has often used unconventional items in his creations such as sunglasses and lego. In this vein, lot 301 is great fun too and includes a Moschino swimsuit with sunglasses and a mouth. Both lots celebrating the fun of fashion!
My favourite piece in this sale is Lot 47, the little boy's Eton Montem jacket, circa 1810. This tiny hussar-style red jacket was worn by a very privileged little boy named Harry Grove, b.1803. 'Eton Montem' was an Eton tradition held annually, where the young students marched up a hill and were sprinkled with salt as part of a bizarre initiation ceremony. Over the years it became more of a flag-day with music, celebratory crowds and royalty in attendance. In 1847 the tradition was forced to end due to the opening of the Great Western Railway which attracted large and rowdy crowds from London, who were delighted at the opportunity to throw salt at the young aristocrats!