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1997 Fine Raw Denim Button-Down Dress

Helmut Lang

1997 Fine Raw Denim Button-Down Dress


IT 38: Best for a Women's UK 6 - US 4 or a UK 8 - US 6.

Helmut Lang denim dress from S/S 1997. In excellent used condition. Made in Italy.

Helmut Lang's S/S 1997 collection was a tremendous success that further solidified his status as the quiet avant-garde spirit of his generation. Focusing on the refinement of his personal vision rather than seasonal novelty, Lang showed his characteristic mix of clubwear-inspired separates, sharp suiting and sophisticated eveningwear. Subtle decorative applications brought forth an element of unforeseen abstraction: Solid rubber stripes and satin sashes in bold colours evoked graphic modernity; deconstructed elements and abbreviated shapes were wrapped around the models' bodies, confusing and enticing the viewer; nylon trims gave a sport-inspired urgency to sober fitted lines. In addition, this collection marks the large scale introduction of Helmut Lang's iconic 'Jeans' label.

Several pieces from the S/S 1997 Jeans range were adaptations of archival pieces from the Helmut Lang mainline, realised in hard-wearing materials. This dress features the iconic shape of Lang's iconic early 1990's dresses, while its details are appropriated from Lang's denim jackets for menThe design consists of a denim-style button closure, leading up to a strong point collar. Rectangular patch pockets with flaps decorate the chest, while a sharp horizontal seam creates a gorgeous geometrical detail that is quintessential Lang. This is demonstrated beautifully on the back, where it meets a vertical seam to form an inverted T-shape. 

The dress's cut is fitted on the torso with a subtle A-line towards the hem, while narrow shoulders and narrow short sleeves further complement the streamlined silhouette. The fabric is a lighter and softer version of Lang's iconic raw blue denim, with a crisp texture and beautiful texture variations that suggest it may have Japanese origins. Beautiful details complete the design, such as the bronze-tone metal hardware engraved with the Helmut Lang logo. As to be expected, all seams are executed with outmost precision.

A key piece from one of Helmut Lang's most celebrated 1990's collections in excellent condition, this dress captures the essence of the Austrian designer's paradigm-shifting minimalist attitude; in our opinion, it belongs in someone's personal wardrobe as much as it belongs to the collection of a contemporary art museum. 

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