Detail: Vintage John Galliano 1980s matador cropped / bolero jacket produced in exquisite black linen - London label, so pre Givenchy and Dior in Paris. From 1993, Galliano's brand was produced in Paris, so any piece with the "London Made In Britain" label is now considered extremely rare and collectable. During his London days, John Galliano produced limited runs per style.
This piece illustrates Galliano's early genius with intricate tailoring techniques deployed in the 1900s. The cutting pattern for the jacket would have been complex. The jacket consists of two layers. The first is a waistcoat, visible to the front with braided rope and button fastening. The waistcoat is attached to the collar seam of the outer layer which, drapes in much the same way as an Edwardian caplet. Fluted three quarter length sleeves with turned up cuffs. The architecture of this piece is really quite extraordinary! Unique and highly collectable.
Once Galliano had graduated from City and East London College, he enrolled at Central Saint Martins, where he made a remarkable impact. His graduation collection, titled ‘Les Incroyables’, made brilliant by his romantic flair and diligence, received huge approval. Indeed, his whole line was hastily snapped up and put into the window of Browns boutique. Galliano left Central Saint Martins in 1983 with a first class degree and a healthy stockpile of critical acclaim. In 1984, Galliano unleashed his own label. More critical approval followed. His daring reinvention of romantic themes and delicate, superbly tailored garments were his trademarks.
In 1987 he received the ‘British Designer of the Year’ award. However, critical success was not matched by major financial success. He lost backers and did not have enough money to show for several seasons. In frustration, he quit London for Paris in the early 1990’s. This was not an immediate solution. Several times Galliano was almost forced to declare bankruptcy. This was made all the more bitter by the fact that, while he struggled for money, his critical praise continued unabated. Fortunately, the admiration of the fashion community allowed him to continue. Fashion editors and critics were always busy trying to get work for Galliano, and models, like Kate Moss, worked for him out of friendship rather than money.
In 1995 Galliano finally got the break he so richly deserved: he became the first English man to head a French couture house, when he was put in charge of Givenchy. His knack for taking themes and styles, often Latin or romantic, from the past, and somehow making them contemporary and edgy, is astonishing. Perhaps just as remarkable is the perseverance and conviction of the man. He has managed to keep his talent undiluted through difficult times and emerge with glory and success. Vintage John Galliano black linen matador jacket. London label 1980s.
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