Nicholas and Alexandra
Nicholas and Alexandra is a 1971 British biographical film directed by Franklin J. Schaffner and written by James Goldman, based on Robert K. Massie's book of the same name, which tells the story of the last ruling Russian monarch, Tsar Nicholas II of Russia, his wife, Tsarina Alexandra; the film won Academy Awards for Best Art Direction-Set Decoration and Best Costume Design, was nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role, Best Cinematography, Best Music, Original Dramatic Score and Best Picture. Alexei, youngest child of Tsar Nicholas, is born in 1904 during the Russo-Japanese War. Nicholas is warned by his cousin Grand Duke Nicholas and the Prime Minister Count Witte that the war is futile and costing too many lives, they tell him the Russian people want representative government, health care and workers' rights, but Nicholas wants to maintain the autocracy. Meanwhile, underground political parties led by Vladimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin and Leon Trotsky have formed. Alexei is diagnosed with hemophilia.
The Tsarina Alexandra, a German princess, is disliked by the Russian royal court. She befriends a Siberian peasant passing as a holy man, hoping he will heal Alexei. Working under appalling conditions, factory workers are encouraged by Father Georgy Gapon to take part in a peaceful procession to the Winter Palace to present a petition to the Tsar. However, hundreds of soldiers standing in front of the palace fire into the crowd. Nicholas is horrified. In 1913 the family holidays at the Livadia Palace in the Crimea. Prime Minister Pyotr Stolypin has preserved the Russian Empire by honoring some of the peoples' grievances, he presents Nicholas with police reports about Rasputin's dissolute behaviour, damaging the Tsar's reputation. Nicholas dismisses Rasputin from the court. Alexandra demands his return, as she believes only Rasputin can stop the bleeding attacks, but Nicholas stands firm in his decision; the 1913 Romanov Tercentenary celebrations occur and a lavish Royal Tour across Imperial Russia ensues, but crowds are thin.
Other national festivities and Church celebrations go ahead, but an event at the Kiev Opera House ends horribly when Prime Minister Stolypin is assassinated. Nicholas closes the Duma, allowing police to terrorise the peasants. Alexei falls at the Spała Hunting Lodge, it is presumed. The Tsarina writes to Rasputin. Alexei recovers and Rasputin returns; when World War I begins, Nicholas orders a full mobilization of the Russian army on the German border, prompting Germany to declare war and activating a series of alliances that enlarges the war. He decides to command the troops in 1915 and leaves for the front, taking over from his experienced cousin, Grand Duke Nicholas. Alexandra is left in charge at home, under Rasputin's influence, she makes poor decisions. Nicholas is visited by his mother Dowager Empress Feodorovna, critical of his incompetence, she scolds him about avoiding domestic issues and implores him to eliminate Rasputin and to send Alexandra to Livadia in the Crimea. Concerned about Rasputin's influence, Grand Duke Dmitri and Prince Felix Yusupov invite Rasputin to a party and murder him through several unsuccessful methods in December, 1916.
Despite Rasputin's death, Alexandra continues her misrule. The army is ill supplied, starving and freezing workers revolt in St. Petersburg in March 1917. Nicholas is forced to abdicate in his train; the family with Dr. Botkin and attendants leave Tsarskoye Selo and are exiled by Kerensky to Tobolsk in Siberia in August 1917, they live guarded under less grand conditions. In October 1917, Russia falls to the Bolsheviks; the family is transferred to the Ipatiev House in Yekaterinburg. Under harsher conditions they are guarded by the cold-blooded Yakov Yurovsky. One of the guards attempts to steal Alexei's gold chain, in the process attacking the child, Nagorny leaps to his defense. Nagorny shot; the family are given a batch of withheld letters from friends and relatives, laughing together as they read through them. In the early hours of 17 July 1918, the Bolsheviks awaken the family and Dr. Botkin, telling them they must be transferred again, they are waiting in the cellar, when his assistants enter the room and open fire.
Producer Spiegel tackled Nicholas and Alexandra when he was shut out from working with director David Lean on Doctor Zhivago, set against the backdrop of revolutionary Russia. Spiegel had alienated Lean when the two worked together dogging the perfectionist director in order to get the film Lawrence of Arabia finished on time. Spiegel tried to make Nicholas and Alexandra without buying the rights to the book by Robert K. Massie's claiming the story was in public domain but Spiegel purchased the rights and hired writer James Goldman to do the adaptation of Massie's book. Goldman, who had written the popular play and film The Lion in Winter, laboured on draft after draft as directors came and went. After seeing Patton, Goldman recommended Franklin J. Schaffner. Spiegel turned to former collaborators John Box to do the production design and cinematographer Freddie Young to work on the film so as to give the production the epic touch he felt it needed. Principal photography to
Robert Piguet was a Swiss-born, Paris-based fashion designer, remembered for training Christian Dior and Hubert de Givenchy. The Piguet fashion house ran from 1933 to 1951. Piguet was born in Yverdon-les-Bains in Switzerland, in 1898, according to the Swiss Fashion Museum, the Musée suisse de la Mode, which holds his archives, although many other sources give an alternative birth year of 1901. In Paris Couturiers and Milliners, published in 1949, Piguet is said to have been 17 in 1918. Piguet died at Lausanne, Switzerland, on 22 February, 1953; the young Piguet trained to be a banker, like his father, but preferred fashion design, much to his father's disapproval. In late 1918, just after the end of World War I, he decided to go to Paris to pursue his vocation. Piguet began working with Paul Poiret, before being poached by the Paris branch of Redfern. In 1932, an American author writing on Paris fashion commented that the American cartoonist'would select Robert Piguet, the designer at Redfern's, as the ideal Parisian dressmaker.'In 1933, Piguet launched his own fashion house.
Eleanor Lambert described him as known for'"thin suits" and tasteful day dresses,' whilst Vogue declared him the'master of the little wool dress'. He is best known for giving Christian Dior his big break in 1937, allowing him to design for three collections. Dior said:'Robert Piguet taught me the virtues of simplicity through which true elegance must come.' One of Dior's designs for Piguet, a day dress called'Cafe Anglais' with a short and full skirt was well received. While at Piguet, Dior worked alongside Pierre Balmain, was succeeded by Marc Bohan as house designer. In addition to Dior and Balmain, other designers who had an early start with Piguet included James Galanos and Hubert de Givenchy. Piguet's archive, consisting of 3,000 original designs and documents, is held by the Musée suisse de la Mode, in his birthplace, Yverdon-les-Bains. In collaboration with Germaine Cellier, Robert Piguet launched his first perfume Bandit in the USA in 1944, with a dramatic presentation featuring models with guns and knives, one of whom is said to have smashed a bottle of the fragrance on the floor.
His most successful fragrance was Fraças co-developed with Cellier - an updated version of, inducted into the FiFi Awards's Hall of Fame in 2006. Other fragrances developed under Piguet's supervision were Baghari. Following Piguet's death, fragrances such as Cravache and Futur continued to be developed under his name, although'Robert Piguet' fell from public awareness until being bought by the American company Fashion Fragrances & Cosmetics Ltd in 1993. "Robert Piguet Parfums". - Official site for the current company "Robert Piguet at Fragrantica". "Interview with Joe Garces, creative director of Robert Piguet Parfums"
Spain the Kingdom of Spain, is a country located in Europe. Its continental European territory is situated on the Iberian Peninsula, its territory includes two archipelagoes: the Canary Islands off the coast of Africa, the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean Sea. The African enclaves of Ceuta, Peñón de Vélez de la Gomera make Spain the only European country to have a physical border with an African country. Several small islands in the Alboran Sea are part of Spanish territory; the country's mainland is bordered to the south and east by the Mediterranean Sea except for a small land boundary with Gibraltar. With an area of 505,990 km2, Spain is the largest country in Southern Europe, the second largest country in Western Europe and the European Union, the fourth largest country in the European continent. By population, Spain is the fifth in the European Union. Spain's capital and largest city is Madrid. Modern humans first arrived in the Iberian Peninsula around 35,000 years ago. Iberian cultures along with ancient Phoenician, Greek and Carthaginian settlements developed on the peninsula until it came under Roman rule around 200 BCE, after which the region was named Hispania, based on the earlier Phoenician name Spn or Spania.
At the end of the Western Roman Empire the Germanic tribal confederations migrated from Central Europe, invaded the Iberian peninsula and established independent realms in its western provinces, including the Suebi and Vandals. The Visigoths would forcibly integrate all remaining independent territories in the peninsula, including Byzantine provinces, into the Kingdom of Toledo, which more or less unified politically and all the former Roman provinces or successor kingdoms of what was documented as Hispania. In the early eighth century the Visigothic Kingdom fell to the Moors of the Umayyad Islamic Caliphate, who arrived to rule most of the peninsula in the year 726, leaving only a handful of small Christian realms in the north and lasting up to seven centuries in the Kingdom of Granada; this led to many wars during a long reconquering period across the Iberian Peninsula, which led to the creation of the Kingdom of Leon, Kingdom of Castile, Kingdom of Aragon and Kingdom of Navarre as the main Christian kingdoms to face the invasion.
Following the Moorish conquest, Europeans began a gradual process of retaking the region known as the Reconquista, which by the late 15th century culminated in the emergence of Spain as a unified country under the Catholic Monarchs. Until Aragon had been an independent kingdom, which had expanded toward the eastern Mediterranean, incorporating Sicily and Naples, had competed with Genoa and Venice. In the early modern period, Spain became the world's first global empire and the most powerful country in the world, leaving a large cultural and linguistic legacy that includes more than 570 million Hispanophones, making Spanish the world's second-most spoken native language, after Mandarin Chinese. During the Golden Age there were many advancements in the arts, with world-famous painters such as Diego Velázquez; the most famous Spanish literary work, Don Quixote, was published during the Golden Age. Spain hosts the world's third-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Spain is a secular parliamentary democracy and a parliamentary monarchy, with King Felipe VI as head of state.
It is a major developed country and a high income country, with the world's fourteenth largest economy by nominal GDP and sixteenth largest by purchasing power parity. It is a member of the United Nations, the European Union, the Eurozone, the Council of Europe, the Organization of Ibero-American States, the Union for the Mediterranean, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the Schengen Area, the World Trade Organization and many other international organisations. While not an official member, Spain has a "Permanent Invitation" to the G20 summits, participating in every summit, which makes Spain a de facto member of the group; the origins of the Roman name Hispania, from which the modern name España was derived, are uncertain due to inadequate evidence, although it is documented that the Phoenicians and Carthaginians referred to the region as Spania, therefore the most accepted etymology is a Semitic-Phoenician one.
Down the centuries there have been a number of accounts and hypotheses: The Renaissance scholar Antonio de Nebrija proposed that the word Hispania evolved from the Iberian word Hispalis, meaning "city of the western world". Jesús Luis Cunchillos argues that the root of the term span is the Phoenician word spy, meaning "to forge metals". Therefore, i-spn-ya would mean "the land where metals are forged", it may be a derivation of the Phoenician I-Shpania, meaning "island of rabbits", "land of rabbits" or "edge", a reference to Spain's location at the end of the Mediterranean. The word in question means "Hyrax" due to Phoenicians confusing the two animals. Hispania may derive from the poetic use of the term Hesperia, reflecting the Greek perception of Italy as a "western land" or "land of the setting sun" (Hesperia
Gabrielle Bonheur "Coco" Chanel was a French fashion designer and business woman. The founder and namesake of the Chanel brand, she was credited in the post-World War I era with liberating women from the constraints of the "corseted silhouette" and popularizing a sporty, casual chic as the feminine standard of style. A prolific fashion creator, Chanel extended her influence beyond couture clothing, realizing her design aesthetic in jewellery and fragrance, her signature scent, Chanel No. 5, has become an iconic product. She is the only fashion designer listed on Time magazine's list of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century. Chanel herself designed her famed interlocked-CC monogram, in use since the 1920s. Chanel's social connections encouraged a conservative personal outlook. Rumors arose about Chanel's activities during the German occupation of France during World War II, she was criticized for being too close to the German occupiers: One of Chanel's liaisons was with a German diplomat, Baron Hans Günther von Dincklage.
After the war, Chanel was interrogated about her relationship with von Dincklage, but she was not charged as a collaborator. After several post-war years in Switzerland, she revived her fashion house. In 2011, Hal Vaughan published a book about Chanel based on newly declassified documents, revealing that she had collaborated with German intelligence activities. One plan in late-1943 was for her to carry an SS peace overture to British Prime Minister Winston Churchill to end the war. Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel was born in 1883 to mother, Eugénie Jeanne Devolle—known as Jeanne—a laundrywoman, in the charity hospital run by the Sisters of Providence in Saumur, Maine-et-Loire, France, she was Jeanne's second child with Albert Chanel. Albert Chanel was an itinerant street vendor who peddled work clothes and undergarments, living a nomadic life, traveling to and from market towns; the family resided in rundown lodgings. In 1884, he married Jeanne Devolle, persuaded to do so by her family who had "united to pay Albert to marry her."At birth, Chanel's name was entered into the official registry as "Chasnel".
Jeanne was too unwell to attend the registration, Albert was registered as "travelling". With both parents absent, the infant's last name was misspelled due to a clerical error; the couple had five children who survived—two boys and three girls—who lived crowded into a one-room lodging in the town of Brive-la-Gaillarde. When Gabrielle was 12, her mother died of tuberculosis at the age of 32, her father sent his two sons to work as farm laborers and sent his three daughters to the convent of Aubazine, which ran an orphanage. Its religious order, the Congregation of the Sacred Heart of Mary, was "founded to care for the poor and rejected, including running homes for abandoned and orphaned girls", it was a frugal life, demanding strict discipline. Placement in the orphanage may have been the best thing for Coco's future because it is where she learned to sew. At age eighteen, too old to remain at Aubazine, went to live in a boarding house for Catholic girls in the town of Moulins. In life, Chanel would retell the story of her childhood somewhat differently.
She said that when her mother died, her father sailed for America to seek his fortune, she was sent to live with two aunts. She claimed to have been born a decade than 1883 and that her mother had died when she was much younger than 12. Having learned to sew during her six years at Aubazine, Chanel found employment as a seamstress; when not sewing, she sang in a cabaret frequented by cavalry officers. Chanel made her stage debut singing at a cafe-concert in La Rotonde, she was a performer who entertained the crowd between star turns. The money earned, it was at this time that Gabrielle acquired the name "Coco" when she spent her nights singing in the cabaret the song, "Who Has Seen Coco?" She liked to say the nickname was given to her by her father. Others believe "Coco" came from Ko Ko Ri Ko, Qui qu'a vu Coco, or it was an allusion to the French word for kept woman, cocotte; as an entertainer, Chanel radiated a juvenile allure that tantalized the military habitués of the cabaret. In 1906, Chanel worked in the spa resort town of Vichy.
Vichy boasted a profusion of concert halls and cafés where she hoped to achieve success as a performer. Chanel's youth and physical charms impressed those for whom she auditioned, but her singing voice was marginal and she failed to find stage work. Obliged to find employment, she took work at the Grande Grille, where as a donneuse d'eau she was one whose job was to dispense glasses of the purportedly curative mineral water for which Vichy was renowned; when the Vichy season ended, Chanel returned to Moulins, her former haunt La Rotonde. She now realised. At Moulins, Chanel met Étienne Balsan. At the age of twenty-three, Chanel became Balsan's mistress, supplanting the courtesan Émilienne d’Alençon as his new favorite. For the next three years, she lived with him in his château Royallieu near Compiègne, an area known for its wooded equestrian paths and the hunting life, it was a lifestyle of self-indulgence. Balsan's wealth allowed the cultivation of a social set that reveled in partying and the gratification of human appetites, with all the implied accompanying decadence.
Balsan showered Chanel with the baubles of "the
Cristóbal Balenciaga Eizaguirre was a Spanish Basque fashion designer and the founder of the Balenciaga fashion house. He had a reputation as a couturier of uncompromising standards and was referred to as "the master of us all" by Christian Dior and as "the only couturier in the truest sense of the word" by Coco Chanel, who continued, "The others are fashion designers", he continues to be revered as the supreme deity of the European salons. On the day of his death, in 1972, Women's Wear Daily ran the headline "The king is dead". Since 2011 the purpose built Museo Balenciaga has exhibited examples of his work in his birth town Getaria. Many of the 1,200 pieces in the collection were supplied by his pupil Hubert de Givenchy and clients such as Grace Kelly. Balenciaga was born in Getaria, a fishing town in the Basque province of Gipuzkoa, on January 21, 1895, his father was a simple fisherman who died when Cristobal was a boy, his mother a seamstress. As a child Balenciaga spent time with his mother as she worked.
At the age of twelve, he began work as the apprentice of a tailor. When he was a teenager, the Marchioness de Casa Torres, the foremost noblewoman in his town, became his customer and patron, she sent him to Madrid, where he was formally trained in tailoring.. Balenciaga was gay; the love of his life and long time partner was Franco-Russian milliner Vladzio Jaworowski d'Attainville, who had helped fund setting him up. When d'Attainville died in 1948, Balenciaga was so broken. Balenciaga was successful during his early career as a designer in Spain, he opened a boutique in San Sebastián in 1919, which expanded to include branches in Madrid and Barcelona. The Spanish royal family and the aristocracy wore his designs, but when the Spanish Civil War forced him to close his stores, Balenciaga moved to Paris, he opened his Paris couture house on Avenue George V in August 1937. However, it was not until the post-war years that the full scale of the inventiveness of his original designs became evident. In 1951, he transformed the silhouette, broadening the shoulders and removing the waist.
In 1955, he designed the tunic dress, which developed into the chemise dress of 1957. In 1959, his work culminated in the Empire line, with high-waisted dresses and coats cut like kimonos. In 1960 he made the wedding dress for Fabiola de Mora y Aragón when she married King Baudouin I of Belgium; the Queen donated her wedding dress to the Cristóbal Balenciaga Foundation. He created many designs for socialite Aline Griffith, diplomat Margarita Salaverría Galárraga, designer Meye Allende de Maier, considering them his muses, he taught fashion design classes, inspiring other designers including Oscar de la Renta, André Courrèges, Emanuel Ungaro, Mila Schön and Hubert de Givenchy. His spare, sculptural creations were considered masterworks of haute couture in the 1950s and 1960s. Balenciaga closed his house in 1968 at the age of 74 after working in Paris for 30 years, he decided to retire and closed his fashion houses in Paris and Madrid, one after the other. Balenciaga died on March 1972 in Xàbia, Spain.
Today the Balenciaga fashion house continues under the direction of Demna Gvasalia and under the ownership of the Kering Group. During the 1950s designers like Christian Dior, Pierre Balmain, Coco Chanel, creating pieces representative to their fashion houses and to their own styles. An important protagonist for this period was Cristobal Balenciaga; this Spanish fashion designer was known as "The King of Fashion" and was one of the great masterminds of the period. Balenciaga was born and raised in Spain, where he worked for the Spanish royalty, but because of the Spanish Civil War he moved to Paris where he became this "King of Fashion"; the most eye-catching designer of this period was Balenciaga because of his structural designs, which had never before been seen in the fashion world. He was a master of tailoring, he was able to translate his illustrations from paper to real life, his advanced tailoring skills gave him an advantage over designers all over the world, making him a major target for customers.
"He reshaped women's silhouette in the 1950s, so that clothes we think as typical of that decade are dilutions of his work". Compared to some work like the New Look from Christian Dior, which featured full skirts and a tiny waist, Balenciaga changed these to look like the Yoki coat, a one-seam coat, or to voluminous looks. However, this look made. On 24 March 2011, San Francisco's M. H. de Young Museum celebrated the opening of "Balenciaga and Spain", a 120-piece fashion retrospective of his career. "You can't measure it", said Rodarte designer Laura Mulleavy, of Balenciaga's influence. The $2,500-a-ticket fund-raiser for the museum drew 350 guests, including Marissa Mayer, Jamie Tisch, Gwyneth Paltrow, Orlando Bloom, Balthazar Getty, Maggie Rizer, Connie Nielsen, Maria Bello and Mia Wasikowska. On 7 June 2011, the Balenciaga Museum was inaugurated in his hometown of Getaria by Queen Sofía of Spain and with the presence of Hubert de Givenchy, honorific president of the Balenciaga Foundation.
The museum has a collection of more than 1,200 pieces designed by Balenciaga, some of them donations by disciples, like Givenchy, or clients, like Queen Fabiola of Belgium and the heirs of Grace
Florence Nightingale Graham, who went by the business name Elizabeth Arden, was a Canadian American businesswoman who founded what is now Elizabeth Arden, Inc. and built a cosmetics empire in the United States. By 1929 she owned 150 upscale salons across the United States and Europe, her 1000 products were found in the luxury market in 22 countries. She was the sole owner, at the peak of her career she was one of the wealthiest women in the world. Arden was born in 1878 in Woodbridge, Canada, her parents had emigrated to Canada from United Kingdom, in the 1870s. Her father, William Graham, was Scottish, her mother, was Cornish and had arranged for a wealthy aunt in Cornwall to pay for her children's education. Arden dropped out of nursing school in Toronto, she joined her elder brother in Manhattan, working as a bookkeeper for the E. R. Squibb Pharmaceuticals Company. While there, Arden spent hours in their lab, she worked—again briefly—for Eleanor Adair, an early beauty culturist, as a "treatment girl".
In her salons and through her marketing campaigns, Elizabeth Arden stressed teaching women how to apply makeup, pioneered such concepts as scientific formulation of cosmetics, beauty makeovers, coordinating colors of eye and facial makeup. Elizabeth Arden was responsible for establishing makeup as proper and appropriate—even necessary—for a ladylike image, when before makeup had been associated with lower classes and prostitutes, she targeted middle age and plain women for whom beauty products promised a youthful, beautiful image. In politics, Elizabeth Arden was a strong conservative. In 1909, Arden formed a partnership with another culturist; the business relationship dissolved after six months. Graham, who desired a trade name, used "Elizabeth" to save money on her salon signage, she chose the last name, "Arden", from a nearby farm. So the trade name "Elizabeth Arden" was formed. From there, Arden founded, in 1910, the Red Door salon in New York, which has remained synonymous with her name since In 1912, Arden traveled to France to learn beauty and facial massage techniques used in the Paris beauty salons.
She returned with a collection of tinted powders she had created. She began expanding her international operations in 1915, started opening salons across the world. In 1934, she opened the Maine Chance residential spa in Rome, the first destination beauty spa in the United States, it operated until 1970. In 1962, the French government awarded Arden the Légion d'Honneur, in recognition of her contribution to the cosmetics industry. Arden died at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan on October 18, 1966, she was interred in the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery in Sleepy Hollow, New York, under the name Elizabeth N. Graham; the musical War Paint dramatizes her rivalry with competitor Helena Rubinstein. After a wildly successful out of town tryout at Chicago's Goodman Theater, the show opened on Broadway at the Nederlander Theatre on April 6, 2017, earning four Tony Award nominations, including Best Actress in a Leading Role for Christine Ebersole's portrayal of Arden as well as for Patti Lupone for her role as rival, Rubinstein. and closed on 5 November.
Elizabeth Arden, as Florence Nightingale-Graham, appeared on the October 1, 2018 episode of the CBC period drama Murdoch Mysteries, portrayed by Kathryn Alexandre. Woodhead, Lindy. War Paint. Virago. P. 94. ISBN 978-1-84408-049-6. Haag, Karin Loewen. "Arden, Elizabeth". In Commire, Anne. Women in World History: A biographical encyclopedia. 1. Waterford, CT: Yorkin Publications, Gale Group. Pp. 442–446. ISBN 978-0787640804. Marshall, Mary. Great Breeders and Their Methods. Russell Meerdink Co. Ltd. ISBN 978-0-929346-82-3. Peiss, Kathy. Hope in a jar: The making of America's beauty culture. University of Pennsylvania Press. Willett, Julie A.. The American Beauty Industry Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. Pp. 22–25. Woodhead, Lindy. War Paint. Virago. ISBN 978-1-84408-049-6. Elizabeth Arden at Elizabeth Arden, Inc. Elizabeth Arden at Elizabeth Arden, Inc. corporate Florence Nightingale Graham at FMD FBI dossier on Elizabeth Arden
Pierre Alexandre Claudius Balmain was a French fashion designer and founder of leading post-war fashion house Balmain. Known for sophistication and elegance, he described the art of dressmaking as "the architecture of movement." Balmain's father, who died when the future designer was seven years old, was the owner of a wholesale drapery business. His mother Françoise ran, he went to school at Chambéry and, during weekends with his uncle in the spa town of Aix-les-Bains, his interest in couture fashion was inspired by society women he met. Balmain began studying architecture at the École des Beaux-Arts in 1933 undertaking freelance work drawing for the designer Robert Piguet. After visiting the studio of Edward Molyneux in 1934, he was offered a job, leaving his studies and working for the designer for the succeeding five years, he joined Lucien Lelong during World War II --. Pierre Balmain died at the age of 68 of liver cancer at the American Hospital of Paris, as he just completed the sketches for his fall collection.
His companion was the Danish designer Erik Mortensen, who worked as a designer at Balmain from 1948 until 1991. Margit Brandt worked as a young designer with Pierre Balmain in the early 1960s. Balmain spotted the talent of Karl Lagerfeld, hiring him in 1954 after judging a fashion competition that the young German designer won; the fashion house of Balmain opened in 1945. It showcased long bell-shaped skirts with small waists – a post-war style, popularised in 1947 as Dior's New Look; the first collection was showcased in Vogue in the November issue and the reviewer's reaction was that Balmain delivered: "beautiful clothes that you want to wear". A positive write-up in the magazine from Balmain's friend Gertrude Stein helped to seal the designer's success – early celebrity fans included the Duchess of Windsor who ordered from the collection. Balmain was active in promoting himself internationally from the early days – touring Australia in 1947 and designing a line to be produced in the country.
He expanded operations to the United States in 1951, selling ready-to-wear clothes that earned him a prestigious Neiman Marcus Fashion Award in 1955. He was, by this stage, designing clothes worn by Vojislav Stanimirovic and stars, such as Marlene Dietrich and Katharine Hepburn; such was Balmain's reputation that he was chosen to design the wardrobe of Queen Sirikit of Thailand during her 1960 tour of the United States. In 1968, he created outfits for the 1968 Winter Olympics in Grenoble and he designed outfits for both TWA and Malaysia–Singapore Airlines' cabin crew in the 1960s and'70s. Air France's first female pilot in 1975 wore a uniform by BalmainErik Mortensen, a student of the Danish designer Holger Blum, began as a design assistant at Balmain in 1948, he and Balmain worked well together, Mortensen went from assistant to collaborator. He and Balmain worked together for the rest of Balmain's life. Margit Brandt worked as a young designer with Pierre Balmain in the early 1960s. Balmain spotted the talent of Karl Lagerfeld, hiring him in 1954 after judging a fashion competition that the young German designer won.
Balmain was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Costume Design and won the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Costume Design for Happy New Year. Additional Broadway theatre credits include costumes for Sophia Loren in The Millionairess and Josephine Baker for her eponymous 1964 revue, he was a costume designer for 16 films, including the Brigitte Bardot vehicle And God Created Woman and La Parisienne, designed on-screen wardrobes for the actresses Vivien Leigh and Mae West. He made a lot of dresses for Dalida. Balmain created perfumes, including Vent Vert, his first successful scent and one of the best-selling perfumes of the late 1940s and early 1950s. Other scents included Jolie Madame and Eau d'Amazonie; the fashion house was referred to in the 1960 poster for The Millionairess, which promoted the film as: "The sultry story of the beautiful babe in the Balmain gown who pants for romance". Peter Sarstedt's 1969 hit single Where Do You Go To contains the line: "Your clothes are all made by Balmain".
Balmain's vintage couture gowns remain popular and have been seen on Angelina Jolie, Penélope Cruz, Alexandra Kerry, Tatiana Sorokko, Kate Moss and Kristin Davis, among others. Rappers Akillezz, Kid Cudi and Singer Tory Lanez have a song named after Balmain. Balmain, Pierre, My Years and Seasons, London 1964 Balmain House of Balmain Vintage designs and adverts by Pierre Balmain Pierre Balmain at FMD Pierre Balmain at the Internet Broadway Database "Pierre Balmain - Dress & Petticoat". Victoria and Albert Museum. Retrieved 2007-11-13. "Interactive timeline of couture houses and couturier biographies". Victoria and Albert Museum