This week, 300 of Karl Lagerfeld’s decades-old, 1960s sketches will be auctioned off at Modern Auctions in Palm Springs—including early designs for Elizabeth Taylor and other celebrities. Let us explain: early in Lagerfeld’s career (from 1963 to 1969), the now iconic designer freelanced for a Rome-based design house, Tiziani, which created both street clothing and costumes for movie stars, Taylor included.
In addition to being beautiful to the eye, the hundreds of sketches up for grabs also serve as important pieces of sartorial history. In part with Tiziani’s founder, Evan Richards, Lagerfeld played an instrumental part in enhancing the wearability of couture—i.e., creating ready-to-wear designs that could be produced in higher numbers, for less cost. One such Tiziani piece, shown above, is a sherbet-hued, feathered cape that will be auctioned alongside its original sketch.
While this auction is open to the public, we’d like to see these detailed designs on display for us mere mortals to see. They are a little slice of history, after all.