When perusing Vogue or Harper's Bazaar magazines from the 1950s, in the first few pages you are most likely to see ads from Bergdorf Goodman, Lilli Ann, Bonwit Teller, Saks Fifth Avenue, Emba Mink and Vanity Fair. Amongst those ads from well-known names, you will quite often see a full page ad for a dress from Mary Black. I know......who? I've never found a dress with the Mary Black label and I've often wondered about this forgotten designer. This week I was determined to dig up more information about her. There is not much to go on, but with the help of fellow VFG member Lynne, here is what we found.
As a designer, Black preferred simple lines without an excess of decoration. She felt that women preferred to adorn their dresses with their own jewelry and so would avoid the use of buttons, rhinestones etc. She would often use simple bows or flowers, but always made them removable. She did not like belts and would only offer a belt if a store or customer insisted. She felt a belt ruined the lines of a dress.
The Spectrum Vintage for allowing me to show you a Mary Black dress that they sold years ago. Isn't it a beauty?
Please note: This biography about Mary Black is copyright of Couture Allure and may not be copied without permission.