Yesterday, Dangerous Minds posted a video of Salvador Dalí’s swimsuit designs from 1965—bulky, anti-cleavage numbers that looked like they were made to wow, but not necessarily wear.
Though Death and Taxes doesn’t often dedicate posts to fashion history, it is New York fashion week, and we’re not totally immune to out surroundings, especially when they’re overwhelmingly shiny and uncomfortable looking. So in honor of clothing in some of its strangest, most surreal forms, here are a few items Dalí helped design in the early half of the 20th century, alongside a few examples of looks his work helped inspire.
Happy end of fashion week.
1. The Skeleton Dress
Quilted ribs and vertebrae accent the famous Skeleton dress Dalí and Elsa Schiaparelli designed for the later’s Circus Collection in 1938. The skeleton motif continues to recur in everything from gowns to t-shirts. Notice the similarities between Schiaparelli’s look and DSquared’s skeleton gown from two years ago below:
2. The Shoe Hat
Sticking a shoe on someone’s head is about as silly and backwards as one can expect from fashion. The piece by Dalí and Schiaparelli above inspired Stephen Jones and Manolo Blahnik to create this hat for Liberty London, after one of Manolo Blahnik’s shoe designs.
3. Ruby Lips Brooch
(Glamour and Glitter)
Dalí’s Ruby Lips brooch with pearl teeth from 1949 was inspired by Mae West’s shiny, shapely lips. (He made a couch of them too.) Today lip brooches of all types are easy to find. This is a vintage one by Sonia Rykiel on Far Fetch.
4. The Lobster Dress
Probably most famous on this list, Dalí’s design for Schiaparelli’s lobster dress, shown in 1937, shocked her crtics. Since then, the lobster motif has become a fashion classic. See Anna Wintour’s glamourous gold lobster dress designed by Miuccia Prada, worn at this year’s Met Gala, along with Lady Gaga’s glittering lobster hat.