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Halston

American, 1932-1990

Recognized for the understated but wholly glamorous fashions he introduced in the 1970s, and revered today for his vintage dresses, sunglasses, handbags and other enduring designs, Roy Halston Frowick defined the spare, body-conscious style of the so-called Studio 54 era. In doing so, he became a legend himself, known simply as Halston, a lean moniker that represented the visionary minimalist ideals he would inject into the world of fashion.

Born in Des Moines, Iowa — but raised in Evansville, Indiana — Halston moved to Chicago in 1952, where he worked as a window dresser by day and studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago at night. In the late 1950s, he moved to New York City. As the hat designer for Bergdorf Goodman, he had his first encounter with fame in 1961 when Jackie Kennedy wore a pillbox hat he designed to President John F. Kennedy’s inauguration. Less than a decade later, after hats fell out of fashion and sales plummeted, Halston launched his own ready-to-wear line and opened a ​​Madison Avenue boutique.

One of Halston’s early successes was the sexy Ultrasuede shirtdress, an unassuming adaptation of a man’s oxford shirt introduced in 1972 that became a fashion staple for the well-dressed woman. Named for a washable synthetic fabric that evokes the feel of suede — Halston is said to have previously seen innovative designer Issey Miyake wearing the material — the Ultrasuede shirtdress was cut to complement many figures with buttons that began at the breastbone rather than at the garment’s structured neckline. In one season, 60,000 were sold. Ultrasuede became a Halston signature, and he would use the fabric in coats, luggage and other items.

But it was his seductively simple nightlife designs that made Halston an international name. Often cut on the bias or sewn with single seams, his garments were constructed to flatter the female form like no evening gowns that had come before, popularizing such styles as the halter dress. “Halston brought a spark of the divine to everything he did,” said model Pat Cleveland during an interview about the 2021 Netflix series based on his life.

And, for a while, the designer was as ubiquitous in the clubs as his designs. “For two decades, [Halston] was the king of New York nightlife,” wrote Steven Gaines in Vanity Fair. He was a regular at Studio 54, partying with the likes of Andy Warhol, Bianca Jagger, Liza Minnelli and his Halstonettes, his coterie of glamorous models and muses that included Elsa Peretti. The close friend and collaborator of Halston’s transformed diamond jewelry for Tiffany & Co. after signing a contract with the storied American luxury house in 1974.

Halston won four Coty American Fashion Critics' Awards over the course of his career. In 1973, he sold his company to Norton Simon, and in the early 1980s, it switched ownership again. By 1984, neither his name nor his company were his own. Halston continued to work, however. He collaborated with close friend and legendary choreographer Martha Graham, designing critically acclaimed costumes for her, including for her dance work Persephone in 1987. Halston died of complications from AIDS in 1990.

Today, Halston’s designs can be found in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and more.

Find vintage Halston clothing and fashion accessories today on 1stDibs.

Average Sold Price
$1,798
1970S HALSTON Red Silk Chiffon One Shoulder Dress
By Halston
Located in New York, NY
1970S HALSTON Red Silk Chiffon One Shoulder Dress
Category

1970s Halston

Halston 1970s Pistachio Green Ultra Suede Short Sleeve Vintage 70s Shirt Dress
By Halston, Roy Halston Frowick
Located in San Diego, CA
Chic 1970s HALSTON pistachio green ultra suede short sleeve belted shirt dress ! The perfect color green on the softest most luxurious ultra suede that Halston was famed for. This is...
Category

1970s Halston

1970S HALSTON Butter Yellow Poly Blend Ultrasuede Skirt With Pockets
By Halston
Located in New York, NY
Missing the label so priced as-is 1970S HALSTON Butter Yellow Poly Blend Ultrasuede Skirt With Pockets
Category

1970s Halston

Halston Heritage Plisse Georgette Gown
By Halston
Located in London, GB
This gown by Halston Heritage is such an uplifting choice for weddings and garden parties this summer, it's cut from plisse-georgette and has an elasticated waist that not only defin...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Halston

Purple silk velvet Opéra coat Halston
By Halston
Located in Saint-Ouen-Sur-Seine, FR
Purple silk velvet Opéra coat. SIZE L
Category

1970s Halston

1970s Halston Vintage Black Stretch Strapless Tube Top
By Halston
Located in Portland, OR
This is a 1970's vintage Halston black puckered elastic tube top. It has really unique elastic veins along the inside of the fabric that create a unique puckered effect on the revers...
Category

1970s Halston

1970s Halston Silk Jersey Champagne Slinky Sleeveless Vintage 70s Dress
By Halston, Roy Halston Frowick
Located in San Diego, CA
Beautiful 1970s HALSTON silk jersey slinky dress ! The perfect champagne / buttercream / soft yellow color is great for any time of year. Simply slips over the head and stretches to ...
Category

1970s Halston

1970s Halston Purple Plunging One Piece Vintage 70s Halter Swimsuit Bodysuit
By Halston, Roy Halston Frowick
Located in San Diego, CA
Rare and sexy 1970s HALSTON purple one piece plunging halter swimsuit OR bodysuit ! Beautiful purple jewel tone color. This rare beauty is one of 6 Halston swimsuits that I recently ...
Category

1970s Halston

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Halston Sellers

Brent Amerman
5.0
Fuchsia Treasures Corps
4.8
Vintage Luxury
4.5
Sielian's Vintage Apparel
5.0
Vintage Schieck
4.9
The Paper Bag Princess
5.0

Halston fashion for sale on 1stDibs

1stDibs offers an extraordinary range of authentic Halston fashion. If you’re browsing our collection of unique vintage and designer fashion to elevate your daily look or to introduce new colors to the dazzling formal wear in your wardrobe, this designer’s body of work includes elements of red, purple, green and other tones. Most of the items here were designed during the 20th Century, but you can find examples that were created as recently as the 21st Century and Contemporary. Customers interested in this designer might also find the work of Geoffrey Beene, James Galanos and Emanuel Ungaro appealing. Find designer, vintage and haute couture Halston fashion from top boutiques around the world on 1stDibs. On 1stDibs, the price for these items starts at $195 and tops out at $12,500, while the average work can sell for $1,725. .

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