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1960s Mr. Blackwell Ivory Textured Dress with Cape


Stunning Mr. Blackwell ivory cocktail dress and cape. Both garments are lined in silk, with a wavy, textured fabric as the focus. The sleeveless dress features a dainty scoop neck and a zippered back closure. It has princess seaming in the front and darting in the back. The showstopping sleeveless cape has three buttons on the yoke, a standing Mandarin-inspired collar and fringe acrylic beading. Wear it as a day dress and add the cape for evening. You just can't go wrong with this classic number! Dress - Bust: 35, Waist: 27, Hip: 38, Shoulder Hem Length: 39.25 Cape - Shoulder Hem Length: 40 Dress hem can be lengthened 2 inches *All MRS Couture garments have been professionally cleaned and thoroughly checked before shipping and are ready to wear upon arrival. Born Richard Sylvan Selzer to a poor second generation Jewish Russian Family in Brooklyn, Richard Blackwell had a very difficult childhood. He saw a way out of poverty and abuse in 1936, after he was cast as Tommy, in the 1936 production of Sidney Kingsley’s “Dead End.” Blackwell moved to the West Coast and studied acting alongside Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney, and began working as a messenger at Warner Bros. studio in Burbank, California. Blackwell was signed to RKO Pictures by Howard Hughes, changing his name from “Richard Selzer” to the more widely marketable “Richard Blackwell”. In 1958, after discovering his talent for design while making commissioned costumes for the stage, Blackwell turned to fashion. Upon the launch of his clothing line, Richard Blackwell adopted the Mr. Blackwell name, which corresponded to the luxurious tone set by his “House of Blackwell” label. Blackwell specialized in elegant, formfitting dresses in stylish prints and luxurious fabrics, which often sold for between $800 and $1,000. Blackwell was the first designer to offer a line available to plus-sized women, and was also the first designer to present his work on a television broadcast. Blackwell also claimed he was the first designer to offer designer jeans for women. Shortly after producing his label, Blackwell’s success skyrocketed, and he quickly became known for his beautiful designs and discerning eye. Blackwell had become an authority on taste, and in 1960 was asked to write an article for the American Weekly Magazine detailing the "10 Best and Worst Dressed" people. Blackwell’s quick wit, sharp tongue, and acerbic comments, found a permanent, loving home in fashion journalism, and Blackwell established himself as America’s number 1, and most beloved fashion critic, establishing the first ever annual “Worst-Dressed List.” The list ran from 1960s up until Blackwell’s death in 2008.


  • Material notes







  • Condition
  • Marked size
    2-4 (US)
  • Bust
    35 in. (88.9 cm)
  • Waist
    27 in. (68.58 cm)
  • Hip
    38 in. (96.52 cm)
  • Shoulder to Hem
    39.25 in. (99.7 cm)
  • Seller location
    Houston, TX
  • Reference number

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1stdibs seller since 2014
Typical response time: 3 hrs
Located in Houston, TX
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