The Flying Saucer Dress from Miyake Design Studio (Spring/Summer 1994, prêt-à-porter collection) represents a continuation of Japanese fashion design legend Issey Miyake’s exploration of pleating garments with a playful element. He explains, “The Flying Saucer was a search for what could be done with different sorts of pleating — in this case, accordion pleats — and to see what could be done by combining fabric, design and movement. Why not make brightly-colored, wearable accordion?”
Flying Saucer Dress, Flat (Detail)
The dress is made from machine-sewn polychrome polyester plain weave, and is machine-garment-pleated.
Flying Saucer Dress, Expanded (Detail)
Photographed at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Manus x Machina Fashion Exhibit in the Summer of 2016.
There’s only one drawback when The Met allows photography at one of their fashion exhibits, and that is that I have way too many great photos to choose from, and simply cannot distill the show down to a single blog post. So, it’s extremely fortunate — for me, for you — that Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology, which has been up since May, was extended to September 5th, 2016, or I’d once again be scrambling to throw something together a day before the show ends.
Just to get you up to speed, the Costume Institute’s spring 2016 exhibition explores how fashion designers are reconciling the handmade and the machine-made in the creation of haute couture and avant-garde ready-to-wear. With more than 170 ensembles dating from the early 20th century to the present, the exhibition addresses the founding of the haute couture in the 19th century, when the sewing machine was invented, and the emergence of a distinction between the hand (manus) and the machine (machina) at the onset of mass production. Manus x Machina explores this ongoing dichotomy, in which hand and machine are presented as discordant tools in the creative process, and questions the relationship and distinction between haute couture and ready-to-wear.
I managed to cull ten favorite images — plus one bonus image — for this post. Enjoy!
Various Designs in Sequined and Metallic Finishes
(Left) Boué Soeurs, Court Presentation Ensemble, 1928. (Right) Designs by Alexander McQueen
Hussein Chalayan, Floating Dress
Feathered Cape and Dress By Alexander McQueen
Designs by Alexander McQueen and Iris van Herpen
Pleated Skirts by House of Dior
Miyake Design Studio
Designs by Mariano Fortuny
Designs by Madame Gres (Alix Barton, Rear) and Iris van Herpen (Front)
Designs by Commes De Garçons
And here’s your bonus image:
Don’t you want to go right now? Better hurry, you’ve got about three more weeks!
Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology, will be on Exhibit at The Met Fifth Avenue in Galleries 955, 961–962 and 964–965 Through September 5th, 2016!