Byrne, baby, Byrne….Posted: September 15, 2010
My poor puns know no bounds. I’ve just listed some new items over at Vintage-a-Peel, but wanted to concentrate a blog on just one dress today. It’s as rare as it is beautiful.
There’s not a great deal of information out there on Kiki Byrne, but only a fool would underestimate her importance. Her King’s Road boutique Glass and Black was contemporaneous to Mary Quant’s Bazaar, and the few references around are extremely fond and complimentary about her clothing. She was heavily involved in the Chelsea scene in the Sixties, and her partner was iconic graphic designer Robert Brownjohn. Virginia Ironside’s book ‘Chelsea Girl’ references Byrne’s boutique thus:
We stumbled up the Kings Road back home. We looked, as usual, in Sportique and Kiki Byrne and said how pretty the clothes were, and was Kiki Byrne better than Bazaar.
This dress is a rare example of Byrne’s work, and is utterly representative of her style. She was known for elegant, wearable dresses and often used lace (as you can see in the photo below). This piece is a beauty in horizontal strips of peach lace, on a beige linen base, which are used to cleverly slim where they are stitched down around the waist and then loosen up into the skirt section. Very wearable and in remarkable condition for its age.