I’ve had this Giorgio di Sant’Angelo dress for ages, but have never shown it off. Well now I’ve got two good reasons to talk a little about di Sant’Angelo.
Di Sant’Angelo is one of those designers whose reputation has suffered due to the over-licensing of his name in the 1980s and 90s. Most of the clothing found today with his label is of the dress for success variety – basic work clothing in grey flannel and plaid. But during the 1960s and early 70s, he was in the business of turning women into gypsies. He worked as a stylist for Diana Vreeland at Vogue, helping to turn her fantasies into magazine editorials in exotic locales. And when those clothes could not be purchased by Vogue readers, mainly because so many of them were painted on the model, he began his own label.
For the next few years, he made colorful clothing of the ethnic sort that was so popular during this time. He also worked with stretch knits with lycra, making bodysuits and fitted dresses. In 1976, Di Sant’Angelo decided it was time for a change. He simplified his name, dropping the di, he moved to a plainer apartment and bought modern furniture. He continued to design, but with a very different aesthetic. The gypsies were now working women.
But it is the gypsy that should be remembered, as my dress proves. I’ve always thought it would have been the perfect 1970s wedding dress, so I was pretty amused to see Tori Spelling wearing the very same dress (not the actual dress; I still have the one above).
Photo copyright Life & Style
Here are some more photos of my dress, Enjoy the details.
If you are in the Phoenix area, you are in luck. Now through February 12, 2012, the Phoenix Art Museum has an exhibition of Giorgio di Sant’Angelo’s work. Here is the exhibition poster.