Uplifting Photos-1950’s Madame Adrienne Bra Designs

Madame Adrienne was a popular bra designer in the 50’s, back when lingerie was way more  glamorous than anything Victoria’s Secret can come up with today.   This article “How to sell a bra” and photos, are from a 1953 issue of Pageant Magazine.

The author states that in order for Madame Adrienne to sell her well designed, perfectly good everyday bras,  she must dramatize the bra by “inventing, designing and publicizing other bras, equally well designed but somewhat more elaborate.”

This halter bra in the photo below is made  of baby somali leopard and sold for $1200.00 back in 1953.  It was also available in ocelot for the thrifty shopper at a mere $600.00.  Hmmm, must have been from her “Soon to be an endangered species collection.”

1950's Baby Somali Leopard Halter Bra by Madame Adrienne

1950's Baby Somali Leopard Halter Bra by Madame Adrienne

These deep plunge, wire tops sold for $18.50 and $32.50.  But if you had a rich sugar daddy,  you  could always have a sprinkling of real pearls added for $650.00,  or even diamonds for $7000.00.

Deep plunging wire tops had the option to add pearls and diamonds

Deep plunging wire tops had the option to add pearls and diamonds

Below is a “bra, waist cincher and skirt in red nylon velvet with mink trim and cape stole. For cozy at-homes. $1200.00”  This is  just a 50’s way of saying a hostess outfit for a casual get together at your home.   After all , one wouldn’t want to be stuck without something to throw on if visiting royalty showed up at the door!

Red nylon velvet hostess outfit with mink trim and stole

Red nylon velvet hostess outfit with mink trim and stole

This complicated little combo called the “Tulip”,  was a “bra plus slip plus waist cincher plus petticoat”.   A veritable steal at only $50.00! I don’t know why, but my weird mind is picturing some creepy guy on the the other end of the phone wanting to know what she’s wearing and when she tells him, he’s like  “Never mind, lady.  Sorry I asked.”

The "Tulip", a bra, slip, waist cincher and petticoat all rolled into one

The "Tulip", a bra, slip, waist cincher and petticoat all rolled into one.

Model in top photo, below,  is wearing the “Midas Touch” bustier, decorated in tiny golden crystal bugle beads, which sold for $250.00. Below is the “Snow Queen” in white satin, with mink lined fichu.  Just a fancy name for a scarf, with the addition of fur, makes what is a plain bra worth $500.00.

The "Midas Touch" beaded bustier and "Snow Queen" white satin longline bra with mink trimmed fichu

The "Midas Touch" beaded bustier and "Snow Queen" white satin longline bra with mink trimmed fichu

These two lovely ladies modelled lingerie by day, but could be seen nightly performing at the famous Copacabana night club in New York City.   Caption in photo states “Still just bras, but add a tulle stole and they become dresses.”

Chantilly lace and a pretty face

Chantilly lace and a pretty face

So for any of you young chickies out there who think the idea of underwear worn as outerwear was invented by Madonna in the 80’s, now you know.

It just goes to show how fashion history repeats itself,   to be enjoyed another day with a whole new twist.

Madonna's "Like a Virgin" performance at the 1984 MTV Video Music Awards

Madonna's "Like a Virgin" performance at the 1984 MTV Video Music Awards

And if you wear a 36B, you can actually purchase an authentic 1950s Madame Adrienne bra for $35.00 over at Viva Vintage Clothing.

50s Madame Adrienne strapless black longline bra

50s Madame Adrienne strapless black longline bra

By | 2014-02-17T09:10:11-04:00 April 2nd, 2009|Fashion|1 Comment

About the Author:

Theresa
Hi, I'm Theresa, owner and chief classy dame at the Blue Velvet Vintage online boutique. Lover of mid century fashion and home decor, classic films, Old Hollywood, pretty dresses, red lipstick, swing dancing and retro culture in general. Between my ecommere site and vintage style blog my mission is to revive the eras of classy dressing and inspire women to add more glamour to their lives! So don't be shy! I love to hear from others who share my appreciation of the styles of the past.

One Comment

  1. Pink Sale Blog April 6, 2011 at 9:47 pm

    Snow Queen Bustier…

    […] addy,  you  could always have a sprinkling of real pearls added for $650.00,  […]…

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