Rei Kawakubo for Comme des Garçons – 1997.
Have you entered the School of Fashion and ASSOULINE’s Impossible Collection of Fashion Contest yet?! We have been getting some amazing submissions, so keep sending them in! You may have seen me going around to classrooms, showing students the gorgeous book. It truly is a work of art in and of itself – just what ASSOULINE is known for – not to mention all of the gorgeous dresses inside.
Some students have asked about a complete list of the 100 dresses included in the Impossible Collection of Fashion, so here it is! I’m sorry that we cannot include pictures, but I have typed up descriptions of each dress. I hope that this is helpful as you think about what dress you would add to the Impossible Collection!! And if you have any questions about the dresses included, feel free to comment below or on our Facebook page.
1. House of Worth – 1900 – Ivory satin dress embroidered with pink and blue garlands, tulle, and lace.
2. Jacques Doucet – 1903 – Black silk lace with bead embroidery and velvet; silk chiffon sleeves with lace inset; belt of gold grosgrain ribbon.
3. Paul Poiret – 1907 – Black satin, chiffon, pearls, gold thread, and mink gown.
4. Callot Soeurs – 1908 – Evening cape in satin, with embroidered tulle and beading.
5. John Redfern – 1909 – Silk chiffon dinner dress with rose silk taffeta, black silk marquisette, and aubergine silk velvet; gold metallic lace and cream Alençon lace trimmings.
Follow the jump to read more!
6. Mariano Fortuny – 1910 – Pleated evening dress of silk and glass.
7. Paul Poiret – 1912 – Silk, chiffon and satin Sorbet dress, embroidered with glass beads and trimmed with fur.
8. Jeanne Paquin – 1912 – Grey and ivory robe du soir-boissy (evening gown) with crochet detail and silk flower bouquet at bustle.
9. Paul Poiret – 1915 – Silk chiffon evening gown with beading and fur trim, based on dressing gowns from Asia.
10. Madeleine Vionnet – 1921 – Greek vase dress with embroidery by François Lesage.
11. Jeanne Lanvin – 1924 – Nuit Étoilée (Starry Night) evening robe de style of taffeta with tulle sleeves, embroidered with mirror sequins and glass beads.
12. Jeanne Lanvin – 1924 – Hammered silk satin with geometric appliqués of black silk satin and wool broadcloth.
13. Jean Patou – 1925 – Evening ensemble in silk satin with polychrome floral print, beading, and embroidery.
14. Gabrielle Chanel – 1925 – Evening ensemble of silk chiffon lined with silk crepe.
15. Gabrielle Chanel – 1925 – Evening dress of layers of pink crepe chiffon.
16. Edward Molyneux – 1926 – Orange silk evening dress with iridescent sequin fringe.
17. Louiseboulanger – 1928 – Silk evening dress with ostrich feather skirt.
18. Jeanne Lanvin, France – 1929 – Pale pink silk georgette dress, decorated with diamond shapes of silver and diamanté beading.
19. Lucien Lelong – 1930 – Black silk tulle evening dress with tulle ruffle.
20. Madeleine Vionnet – 1931 – Tulle evening gown embroidered by the house of Lesage with black and silver pastilles.
21. Augustabernard – 1933 – Pale pink silk crepe satin and burgundy velvet evening dress, with low back and bow detail.
22. Madeleine Vionnet – 1935 – Ivory Moroccan crepe pleated evening gown.
23. Mainbocher – 1937 – Wedding ensemble of silk crepe with silk chiffon lining created for the Duchess of Windsor.
24. Elsa Schiaparelli – 1937 – White dress of silk organza and horsehair, with a large lobster painted by Salvador Dalí.
25. Elsa Schiaparelli – 1938 – Black silk crepe Skeleton evening dress, with plastic zippers.
26. Alix (Madame Grès) – 1938 – Ivory silk jersey goddess evening dress.
27. Elsa Schiaparelli – 1938 – Velvet evening cape embroidered with gold thread, sequins, and beads.
28. Gabrielle Chanel – 1938 – Midnight blue evening dress with sequin embroidery.
29. Madeleine Vionnet – 1938 – Silver and gold lamé and ivory silk net evening dress, belonged to the Duchess of Windsor.
30. Madeleine Vionnet – 1938 – Pale pink, silver, and gold lame and pale pink silk net evening dress, belonged to Mrs. Harrison Williams, who was once named the “Best-Dressed Woman in the World” by Chanel, Lanvin, Lucien Lelong, Vionnet, Blaenciaga, Edward Molyneux, and Mainbocher.
31. Claire McCardell – 1945 – Black and red silk evening dress with red leather belt.
32. Jean Patou – 1945 – Fleurs de Mal (Flowers of Evil) black and blush evening dress in tulle, sequins, and crepe.
33. Marcel Rochas – 1945 – Black evening gown with velvet bodice and layered tulle skirt, featuring a silk pink rose on the bodice.
34. Nina Ricci – 1945 – White cotton organdy evening dress with ruffled sleeves.
35. Christian Dior – 1947 – Bar suit with white, silk jacket and pleated wool skirt – part of Dior’s “New Look” collection.
36. Mainbocher – 1947 – Black jersey evening dress with silk brocade draped detail at the waist.
37. Christian Dior – 1948 – the Coquette satin evening gown with Ailée (winged) line from the front to the back.
38. Jacques Fath – 1948 – Slipper silk evening dress; bodice embroidered with sequins and beads; lined with net.
39. Christian Dior – 1949 – Junon ball gown of silk net and sequins; skirt of the gown constructed with multiple petals.
40. Christian Dior – 1949 – Pale pink silk tulle Venus ball gown of paillettes, pearls, and rhinestones, silk inner skirt with horsehair stiffening.
41. Pierre Balmain – 1950 – Silk faille evening dress and petticoat, with pink pearl beads, rhinestones, and bullion.
42. Charles James – 1951 – Pink evening gown of pleated silk chiffon, silk satin, and nylon chiffon.
43. Charles James – 1953 – Four-Leaf-Clover evening dress in Duchesse silk satin, ivory silk faille, black silk velvet, and nylon mesh.
44. Cristóbal Balenciaga – 1953 – Balloon evening dress in pale blue silk taffeta (pictured in window display at 625 Polk).
45. Cristóbal Balenciaga – 1954 – Scarlet silk ottoman evening coat with capelet collar.
46. Jacques Fath – 1955 – Black, draped cocktail dress in alpaca wool.
47. Alix (Madame Grès) – 1955 – Delicately gathered and pleated white silk jersey dress.
48. Roberto Capucci – 1956 – Red silk taffeta evening gown with ten skirts.
49. Charles James – 1957 – Diamond dress of ivory silk satin, brown silk plain weave, and black silk velvet.
50. Gabrielle Chanel – 1958 – The classic, structured, tweed Chanel skirt suit.
51. Yves Saint Laurent for Christian Dior – 1959 – Armide white tulle short evening dress with silver sequins.
52. Valentino – 1959 – Fiesta red dress with roses in tulle.
53. Hubert de Givenchy – 1961 – Italian silk satin gown worn by Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly in the film Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
54. Hubert de Givenchy – 1963 – Cloqué silk evening dress of candy pink and serpentine wrap with fishtail train, worn by Audrey Hepburn in a 1963 Vogue magazine shoot.
55. Pierre Cardin – 1965 – Cocktail dress with cut-outs and sable collar.
56. Yves Saint Laurent – 1965 – Mondrian dress in wool jersey.
57. Cristóbal Balenciaga – 1967 – Gazar d’Abraham evening dress of polyamide tulle, with flower appliqués.
58. Cristóbal Balenciaga – 1967 – Chartreuse silk gazar evening dress, with a shortened hem in the front that extends in the back.
59. Paco Rabanne – 1967 – Rare aluminum tunic dress, assembled from linked aluminum panels; bodice panels centered with studs.
60. Yves Saint Laurent – 1967 – Brown silk organza evening dress from the African collection, with bronze tone, black seed, and gold metallic beads.
61. Emilio Pucci – 1967 – Swirled flame print silk chiffon poncho and jewel-cuffed pants.
62. Valentino – 1968 – Ivory silk serge gown with hand painted coral motif.
63. Pierre Cardin – 1968 – Cardine (a fabric of his own creation) minidresses with raised geometric patterns.
64. André Courrèges – 1968 – Mini dress of white embroidered silk tulle, with a mesh panel at the midriff.
65. Yves Saint Laurent – 1970 – Black crepe, long-sleeve evening dress with lace back.
66. Norman Norell – 1972 – Pink silk jersey mermaid dress with sequin embroidery.
67. Marc Bohan for Christian Dior, France – 1972 – Chartreuse evening dress in cigaline, embroidered in absinthe green by Vermont.
68. Yves Saint Laurent – 1975 – Le Smoking tuxedo suit in wool with silk crepe blouse.
69. Halston, United States – 1976 – Gold hammered silk satin spiral cut strapless gown.
70. Yves Saint Laurent – 1976 – Two Ensembles from the designer’s Ballet Russes collection. Red silk chiffon, green silk faille, green silk velvet, and multicolor-print silk chiffon dress. Red silk faille crepe dress with bead embroidery, red faille and gold braid, and red twill with soutache trim.
71. Issey Miyake – 180 – Crimson Plastic Body bodice dress, credited with reinventing the relationship between the body and clothing.
72. Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel – 1983 – An homage to Coco Chanel’s evening dresses. Black silk crepe with trope-l’oeil jewelry, embroidered by Lesage.
73. Jean Paul Gaultier – 1984 – Orange shirred velvet evening dress with cone bust.
74. Marc Audibet – 1985 – Aubergine dress of cotton, viscose, and bi-stretch Lycra fabric with gathered shoulder detail.
75. Christian Lacroix – 1987 – Wedding dress with short velvet jacket embroidered by François Lesage and a meringue silk skirt.
76. Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel – 1987 – Red silk cocktail dress with peplum and gold embroidery.
77. Christian Lacroix – 1987 – Minicrinoline dress with chartreuse duchess satin apron and pink duchesse satin bow.
78. Thierry Mugler – 1989 – Asymmetrical skirt suit with raised shawl collar and embroidered, jeweled flame bodice.
79. Azzedine Alaïa – 1990 – Navy blue stretch Lycra dress with pleated detail at the hem.
80. Azzedine Alaïa – 1992 – Pink corseted skirt suit with eyelet trim on neckline and as a bottom layer of the skirt.
81. Claude Montana for Lanvin – 1992 – Silver Zibeline coast with front bow and embroidered shoulder cape.
82. Gianni Versace – 1992 – Leather bondage dress, modeled by Christy Turlington.
83. Vivienne Westwood – 1993 – Silk tartan ball gown with full skirt, premiered at the Anglomania show.
84. Geoffrey Beene – 1994 – Mercury evening dress of lamé velvet of metallic pile and acrylic twill ground.
85. Yasumasa Morimura for Pleats Please Issey Miyake –1996 – Pleated dress of man-made fiber adorned with Japanese artist Morimura’s manipulation of Ingres’s painting La Source.
86. Azzedine Alaïa – 1996 – Hooded gown of green, acetate knit.
87. Alexander McQueen – 1996 – Lilac silk ensemble appliquéd with black silk lace and embroidered with jet beads.
88. John Galliano for Dior – 1997 – Kitu S-line gown in black silk taffeta, painted with tropical flowers; fishtail train; large flowers painted in organza; Masai-style multicolor beaded corset and choker.
89. John Galliano for Dior – 1997 – Gray wool tweed suit; hip padding in jacket; with long skirt train, choker of thirty-five rings of two tone silver.
90. Jean Paul Gaultier – 1997 – Brown taffeta evening gown with beaded leopard skin print and rhinestone embroidery over tulle.
91. Azzedine Alaïa – 1997 – Metal chain link evening gown.
92. Rei Kawakubo for Comme des Garçons – 1997 – Top and skirt composed of printed cotton gingham, stretch nylon-polyurethane plain weave, and down padding.
93. Rei Kawakubo for Comme des Garçons – 1997 – Body Meets Dress – Dress Meets Body. White stretch nylon-urethane fabric, down paddings.
94. John Galliano for Christian Dior Couture – 1998 – Black silk taffeta Maria Luisa ball gwon, with ruched ribbon appliqué.
95. Yohji Yamamoto – 1998 – Wedding dress with large hooped skirt and hat, had to be supported by handlers on the runway.
96. Junya Watanabe – 2000 – Red jacket and yellow, honey-comb structured skirt of polyester organdy.
97. Hussein Chalayan – Three piece light green silk ensemble, featuring a bustier decorated with topstitched geometric forms and embroidery, an anise green cotton skirt with bleached vertical lines, and a stiff tulle petticoat with cotton yoke at the waist.
98. John Galliano for Christian Dior Couture – 2000 – Gown of tulle and hand-ainted pink and ecru silk taffeta.
99. Alexander MQueen – 2000 – Dress of red and black ostrich feathers and glass medical slides painted red.
100. Hussein Chalayan – 2000 – Airplane dress of fiberglass, metal, cotton and synthetics, that can be operated by remote control so that its panels open.