The New School Archives Digital Collections

Claire McCardell fashion sketches ➔ Townley Frocks 1932


Related people/organizations

Claire McCardell (designer)
Townley Frocks (Firm) (commissioner)


circa 1932

Work Type



8.5 in (width) x 11 in (height)


McCardell continued to work as an assistant for designer Robert Turk at Townley Frocks, Inc. until Turk died unexpectedly in a boating accident during this year. McCardell finished Turk's Fall 1932 collection and was promoted to full designer status at Townley at the age of 27. Her designs were still primarily based on copying and adapting French fashion, and Parisian designer names such as Augusta Bernard, Coco Chanel, Marie-Louise Bruyère, Madeleine Vionnet, and Elsa Schiaparelli appear on a number of the sketches in this series. Additionally, many of the sketches feature names that include Gimbel, Hartman, Boggs, Wie Gant, Paramount, Blumenthal, Miss Jupiter, and Mrs. L. Knott-Odgen, presumably referring to clients, manufacturers, and retailers. Designs in this series continue to adhere to the trends of the early 1930s with calf-length skirts and bias cuts. A large number also feature kimono sleeves, pique trim, and jabot collars.


Yohannan, Kohle and Nancy Nolf. Claire McCardell: Redefining Modernism. New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 1998.

Related Terms

Kellen Design Archives


binders 5-11



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