Suzy Perette was not an actual person, but the name of a dress manufacturing company that made affordable versions of Parisian designs in the 1950s. The Suzy Perette silhouette of cinched waist and full skirt were extremely popular and a quality interpretation of Dior’s famous “New Look.”
The Suzy Perette Company was located in New York City at 134 W. 37th Street from 1949 to the early 1970s. The Suzy Perette name was a registered trademark of Lombardy Dress (founded as Lombardy Frocks in 1930) and was first used in commerce in 1946. The Suzy Perette name was registered by Lombardy Frocks in 1954. A sister label to Suzy Perette is the Gigi Young Fashions label (late fifties to 1966). This label followed the same successful style formula of Suzy Perette designs, but were sold as a less expensive line.
The company was started by Max Blauner who died in 1962. Sydney and Richard Blauner are also connected to the company, but the exact relationship is undetermined. The labels “Designed by Blauner” and “Jeunesse” were also owned by the Blauner family. Evelyn Dawson was the designer for Suzy Perette and Designed by Blauner in the late 1950s. Jeunesse was designed by George Halley.
A popular designer for the Suzy Perette Company was Victor Costa who worked for the company from 1965 to 1973.
An interesting note: The following paragraph came from Paris in the Fifties, by Stanley Karnow. Our thanks to Susan – smm43 – for finding this historical information.
“A spectrum of options was available to wholesalers. I discussed one of them with Sidney Blauner, a chunky man in his fifties whose Manhattan firm turned out a line under the label Suzy Perette. For an ante of two thousand dollars and royalties, he acquired the right to incorporate Dior’s notions into dresses that retailed in the United States for fifty or sixty dollars. Thus, on a slim budget, an Atlanta stenographer or a Cleveland nurse could emulate a glamorous Parisienne. As Blauner told me, “If you don’t come to Paris, you’re missing the boat. There are more ideas in a thimble here than in all of America.”
Written by bartondoll, coutureallurevintage.com