THE GEORGIAN PRINCESS IRENE GALITZINE WAS THE PIONEER OF TODAY’S COOLEST LOOK: THE PYJAMA
Text by Fiammetta Cesana
The Sixties were years of revolution and great cultural changes which brought the global society to how we know it today. Young people fought for gender equality, civil rights, freedom of expression, inspired and backed by the coming of new literature, art and music genres, and, of course, by a new time of fashion world. This spectacular coalition of imaginary and movements by taking down establishment dogmas got people closer, erasing barriers not only between social classes and communities worldwide, but above all within our domestic walls. Women and men started to finally level the playing field, in the workplace as well as at home, and even in their wardrobe!
The unisex /genderless style was born exactly in those years when designers experimented new ways of dressing women that now need something more comfortable to go to the office or to freely enjoy leisure time in the living room without sacrificing elegance and femininity. A revolutionary approach to fashion design that brought from tailleur pants to real pyjama-outfits, which became protagonist of emerging brands and big maisons till recent seasons. And then, this phantom 2020, having made the need of comfort clothes extreme by giving us no other options than the couch, has totally turned into the era of loungewear glamour.
But who was the big name of such contemporary trend? Getting back on track the clothing liberalism of the Thirties mainly introduced by the rebel couturier Coco Chanel, the Princess and designer Irene Galitzine, of Tsibili, launched her world-famous pyjama suit. Silky and embroidered, this new sophisticated homey uniform conquered the hearts of women from the runways to the big screen, with Sophia Loren, Claudia Cardinale and Audrey Hepburn, till the White House with Jacqueline Kennedy, who became a dear friend of hers.
In the early Sixties wrote in 1963 from her perch in the White House to her Georgian friend in Rome, where the Princess went to flee the war:
“Dear Irene: I wish you could see us down here, it’s like a convent. Jayne, Marella, Lee and I are in your uniform every night!” – Kennedy was referring to the upper-class ladies Jayne Wrightsman, Marella Agnelli, and Lee Radziwill.
So today, 60 years later, with all of us doing our best to not neglect beauty and style though the impossibility of “show-off” with Covid-19 lockdown, nothing looks more contemporary and fashionable than a beautiful pyjama.