Norman Norrell, in case you didn't know, was one of the great original American fashion designers, between the '50s and his final collection in 1972.
Interestingly, his designs were very contemporary, very clean -- chemise dresses, military coats and jackets, sailor themes. They look much like current styles by Jil Sander, Burberry, Vuitton and Gucci and, without a doubt, influenced the designers of those lines.
Norell's creations do not come to market very often -- he's been a collected and coveted designer for four decades. A lot of the 140-piece collection that 1stdibs.com will begin to sell Oct.19 all come from the private wardrobe of Beverly Blettner, a philanthropist from Chicago who amassed a sizable collection of Norell over the years, all in sample size 8 (my, how things have changed! Sample size is now 2).
Many stylish women have worn Norell, including First Lady Michelle Obama, who wore a one-of-a-kind vintage 1950s black-lace overlay dress that boasted a full tea-length tulle style skirt and a square neckline, to the Christmas in Washington concert in December. The style icons wore Norell back in the day were Babe Pale and the Duchess of Windsor, among others.
We would wear any of these looks right now -- and forever!