This is a Charles James 4 leaf clover ball gown. It was inspired by the cage crinoline era with two separate understructures of boning. Skirts weighed about 15 lbs, but sits comfortably on the hips. It was not completed in time for Austine Hearst to wear to the Eisenhower Inaugural Ball in 1953.

21 Ferocious Gowns Fit For An Evil Queen

This is a Charles James 4 leaf clover ball gown. It was inspired by the cage crinoline era with two separate understructures of boning. Skirts weighed about 15 lbs, but sits comfortably on the hips. It was not completed in time for Austine Hearst to wear to the Eisenhower Inaugural Ball in 1953.

Dress  Charles James, 1950  The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. I can see this on Ava Gardner.

Dress Charles James, 1950 The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. I can see this on Ava Gardner.

Evening Gown, Charles James: 1951, silk chiffon, silk satin and nylon chiffon. "Charles James, considered an architect of dress, was obsessed with the nuances of his complicated constructed designs. This gown, with its massive billowing skirt, is composed of layer upon layer of silk, boning, horsehair, and crinoline." LACMA Collections Online

Evening Gown, Charles James: 1951, silk chiffon, silk satin and nylon chiffon. "Charles James, considered an architect of dress, was obsessed with the nuances of his complicated constructed designs. This gown, with its massive billowing skirt, is composed of layer upon layer of silk, boning, horsehair, and crinoline." LACMA Collections Online

Charles James, Ball Dress, 1954-1955, Fashion Institute of Technology, New York

Charles James, Ball Dress, 1954-1955, Fashion Institute of Technology, New York

"Petal" Designer: Charles James (American, born Great Britain, 1906–1978) Date: 1951 Culture: American Medium: silk Dimensions: Length at CB: 60 in. (152.4 cm)

"Petal" Designer: Charles James (American, born Great Britain, 1906–1978) Date: 1951 Culture: American Medium: silk Dimensions: Length at CB: 60 in. (152.4 cm)

Evening gown Charles James, designer British-American, 1906-1978 Evening gown, 1955 Silk; cut velvet, satin, taffeta 57.084.1

Evening gown Charles James, designer British-American, 1906-1978 Evening gown, 1955 Silk; cut velvet, satin, taffeta 57.084.1

Charles James Butterfly Gowns, 1950s. Although he had salons in London an Paris in the 1930s, James was an influential American designer that opened a custom-made business in New York in the 1940s. Known for lavish ball gowns and architectural shapes, James was considered to be among the most original American designers.

Charles James Butterfly Gowns, 1950s. Although he had salons in London an Paris in the 1930s, James was an influential American designer that opened a custom-made business in New York in the 1940s. Known for lavish ball gowns and architectural shapes, James was considered to be among the most original American designers.

Evening bodice

Evening bodice

Evening Jacket Charles James, 1936 The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Evening Jacket Charles James, 1936 The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Charles James – Architectural Engineer  |  Coletterie

Charles James – Architectural Engineer | Coletterie

Charles James vintage fashion 50s style formal wear evening gown long dress off shoulder one shoulder strapless silk satin taffeta blue green yellow silver gold models magazine print ad party ball

Charles James vintage fashion 50s style formal wear evening gown long dress off shoulder one shoulder strapless silk satin taffeta blue green yellow silver gold models magazine print ad party ball

A Cecil Beaton photograph for 1948 American Vogue of Charles James gowns. Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photograph by Cecil Beaton, Beaton / Vogue / Condé Nast Archive. Copyright © Condé Nast

A Cecil Beaton photograph for 1948 American Vogue of Charles James gowns. Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photograph by Cecil Beaton, Beaton / Vogue / Condé Nast Archive. Copyright © Condé Nast

Cocktail dress Charles James (American, born Great Britain, 1906–1978) Date: 1953–54 Culture: American Medium: silk. Front

Cocktail dress Charles James (American, born Great Britain, 1906–1978) Date: 1953–54 Culture: American Medium: silk. Front

Evening jacket Charles James (American, born Great Britain, 1906–1978)  Date: 1937–38 Culture: American. Front sideway

Evening jacket Charles James (American, born Great Britain, 1906–1978) Date: 1937–38 Culture: American. Front sideway

Charles James c1944, possibly from an earlier design | The Met

Charles James c1944, possibly from an earlier design | The Met

Charles James was considered himself a sculptor, engineer, and architect. He was famous for being high-strung. He had a hard time meeting the deadlines set by his clients.

Charles James was considered himself a sculptor, engineer, and architect. He was famous for being high-strung. He had a hard time meeting the deadlines set by his clients.

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