1970s Hand Painted Corset Char Vest

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I am still having that little hippie chic bohemian moment this season so forgive me the indulgence of sharing it with you. There is just something about these late 1960s, early 1970s hand made, (and often made to order), soft as butter leathers that just feel right for the mood of the season. The Char label is one of the best of the hand made hippie chic labels from the sixties and seventies and has a cult like following - and I have a couple of really unusual pieces to share! This one is a fantastic vest that is hand-dyed to a rich tan clay color - you can imagine the dye came from the desert itself! (It is slightly less deep in color then photoed) It is a combination of suede and deer skin that is hand cut, with the front painted panels whip-stitched into place. The deerskin front and back panels are hand painted in a soft washed effect done in bouquets of sweet little field flowers.

Char made these pieces, by hand from approx 1968 - about 1975-76 in Mexico. Some of the best leather craftsman in the world were there at the time and the piece made are fantastic. Unusual and fantastic and in great worked in condition.

Bust: approx 16" flat across the inside back at the bottom from side to side

Waist: approx 16" flat across the inside back at the bottom from side to side

Total length: 31" from shoulder to bottom hem

The vest is unlined and closes at the front with rawhide ties corset style. There are very minor scuffs and marks normal to the age and wear of the leather it has that perfect worked in patina that tells you its original and fabulous. The leather on this one is slightly stiffer as the suede is backed in deer hide in the inside rather then being suede on both sides. It should be dry cleaned using leather cleaning techniques when cleaned again in the future.

Modern size equivalent: XS-SML (0-6)
Char Designs
Marked Size
XS-SML (0-6)
Dealer Location
Toronto, Canada
Number of Items
Reference Number
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1stdibs seller since 2010
Located in Toronto, ON