not a fashion

Evening dress 

Designer: Mme. Olympe (American, born France, 1830)
Date: ca. 1865

Culture: American 

medium: silk, mother-of-pearl

Location: The MET

This is one of two extant dresses bearing a Mme. Olympe label. Olympe Boisse was a French-born New Orleans dressmaker who regularly traveled to Paris to keep abreast of trend-setting French fashions of the time.such as those by Charles Frederick Worth and Emile Pingat. Mme. Olympe, as she was professionally known, initially was an importer of French goods but in time designed and sold her own garments. Her claim to fame is that considering the date of this dress, she was one of the first, if not the first, American dressmakers to label her gowns, a practice initiated by Worth et Bobergh in the early 1860s.