Bonnie Cashin was once an American fashion designer, she's been described as one of the original designers of American fashion. She designed uncomplicated, functional clothing that catered specifically to young, independent woman of that period of time up to her death from the modeling career in 1985. Her designs were classic and were a big influence on the women's wear departments of high-end clothing stores. Many of her clothing lines were extremely popular and sold very well. Her unique sense of style and her attention to detail made each piece of clothing a prized heirloom.
There are many things that you can learn about Bonnie cashin through her early years. One of these is her association with the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Cashin organized the first women artists to showcase in history, inviting local women to perform solo acts and she also sponsored the first women's musical group to play at the center. During this era of her career, there were also other female designers who also contributed to the development of the arts, including Mary Cassatt and Belle Ameba.
As part of this association, it's interesting to learn that Bonnie cashin was an avid lover of both western and classical music, playing an instrument herself in the early years and even recording an album called “Eyes” while working in a printing press. This record was recorded by folk singeranna LaPorta. Throughout the late thirties, she began working with the avant-garde art movement in London, traveling there to participate in exhibitions and experimental art performances. She lived in Paris during the late 1950s and was one of its most famous residents, known for her extreme drive, sense of style, and eccentricity.
One of the more popular outfits she wore throughout her career was a pink leather mini-dress that often incorporated high collar, zigzag patterned straps, and a frilly collar. Bonnie designed the designs for her own clothing line, which was named “Bonnie Projects”. It was her desire to wear clothing in a bold, sensual, and erotic manner that led to the use of Gothic, punk, and corset styles in her clothing. The designs often included bold colors, leather fabrics, lace, belts, and intricate detailing. The goal was to create sexy designs without being too outrageous or revealing.
In her early years, casting worked hard to make her fashion designs accessible to middle-class citizens, who could afford to spend their hard-earned cash on the cutting edge fashions of the time. The late nineteen-twenties saw a new focus on alternative materials, as she began to experiment with new textiles, working with tie dye, corduroy, and silk. She was also an avid collector of vintage clothing and designed her own line of costumes and lingerie. The collection, titled “Bonnie Cashin and Her Slangy Slippers”, was a huge hit with both men and women.
Gail and Bonnie Cashin were married in 1950, following the conclusion of their first designer wedding. Their son, Declan, would follow in their footsteps and become another successful designer. Gail passed away in 2021, leaving cash to continue designing and creating her own clothing line.
Bonnie Cashin Evening ensemble American The Metropolitan – bonnie cashin | bonnie cashin
Bonnie Cashin in the Spotlight at the Manhattan Vintage Clothing – bonnie cashin | bonnie cashin
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