Literally a “Fashion Princess,” Irene Galitzine was a visionary Russian-born fashion designer whose most renowned creation was the “palazzo pyjama.” Galitzine was born to a Russian prince of the aristocratic Galitzine family, whose origins date back to 1200 and a Georgian mother. In 1917, following the October Revolution, the family were forced to flee the country to Italy, where Galitzine took up the study of art. She went on to study English at Cambridge and French at the Sorbonne, and joined Italian designers, the Fontana sisters, in 1943.

In 1946 she opened her own salon and presented her first collection but did not become internationally renowned until 1960, when she unveiled the iconic “palazzo pyjamas” – wide legged evening trousers made of soft silk which would come to exemplify the rich bohemian sophisticate. Galitzene’s “palazzo pyjama” collection can be seen on display in leading museums around the world including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, and the Costume Museum in St. Petersburg.

In 1962 she was named Designer of the Year by the Italian fashion press and in 1965 she won the British Sunday Times International Fashion Award. Her designs have been worn by some of the most coveted fashion clients in history Sofia Loren, Elizabeth Taylor, Jackie Kennedy, Audrey Hepburn, and Greta Garbo.

In November of 1996 she published her biography entitled “From Russia to Russia”. Princess Irene Galitzine died at her home in Rome on October 20, 2006 at aged 90, leaving behind a pretty amazing legacy. Oh yeah, did I mention she was a drop-dead stunner?

Below some pics of Galitzine’s gorgeous and prophetic designs as well as the designer with Hubert de Givenchy, Audrey Hepburn, Diana Vreeland, Jacqueline Kennedy, Roger Vivier, Rudolf Nureyev, Bobby Kennedy, and Sofia Loren.  More after the jump.

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Kenny J

10/18/2008

Kenneth Jay Lane has made some of the most amazing jewelry I’ve ever seen. His costume confections have graced women from all walks of life – from Jackie Onassis to Diana Vreeland, Elizabeth Taylor to the Dutchess of Windsor (who it is said is buried in a belt me made for her.) I did not know until recently that he was first a shoe designer for Delman and Christian Dior and he used his free time to create flashy baubles. They were such an instant success that Saks Fifth Avenue sold its entire initial inventory in one day. He was one of the persons included for “high fashion” in the Andy Warhol Screen Tests and a guest at Truman Capote‘s Black And White Ball.  In 1996  he published Faking It and he continues to do his thing from his home in the Stanford White mansion in New York City. Read the rest of this entry »