lucile lady duff gordon

DID YOU KNOW one of Titanic’s first class passengers was a world-renowned fashion designer of controversial womens’ lingerie? Lucy Duff-Gordon, popularly known as “Lady Lucille” after her coterie line, was one of the most famous designers of women’s fashion in the world in 1912. Highly controversial due to her designing women’s dresses with revealing necklines and short skirts, Lucille’s designs were risque but popular - taking the Paris fashion world by storm in the early Twentieth Century. ‘Lucille’ was the world’s first global fashion brand, with boutiques in London, Paris, New York, and Chicago.

Duff-Gordon is also credited with the creation of the “mannequin parade,” wherein women would don Lucille’s designs and parade around a stage to show them off. Thus, Lucy Duff-Gordon invented the fashion show. She popularized less-restrictive corsets and sexually-charged women’s lingerie, thus forcing her to often travel under an alias due to wishing to avoid negative press. Aboard Titanic, the Duff-Gordons traveled as “Mr. and Mrs. Morgan.”

Lucy’s sister, the romance novelist Elinor Glyn, is also popularly credited by linguists as being the origin of using the word “it” to refer to sex.