When businessman/lawyer Jerry Silverman teamed up with Hollywood costume designer Shannon Rodgers they struck gold. Between Silverman’s business savvy skills and Rodgers talent for designing , they created a very successful ready- to -wear line that was popular throughout the 1960s and 1970s.
Rodgers had previously designed costumes for movies, including Vogues of 1938, Marie Antoinette and the 1934 version of Cleopatra starring Claudette Colbert. And according to the Vintage Fashion Guild label resource, Rodgers joined Silverman at Martini, Inc, a company known for their adaptations of Paris designs. After working together there for 10 years, they then decided to launch their own line. The result was the Shannon Rodgers for Jerry Silverman label, a classy, chic, yet fairly affordable line, whose slogan said it all- “Just show me the Jerry Silverman’s, please.”
Below is a streamlined mod dress with tassel trimmed wrap. 1968.
Many of their dresses had sleek, simple lines with accents that made them pop, whether it be big buttons or polka dots. Rodgers used a combination of hand and machine sewing to create fashions geared “to the lifestyle of the woman who travels around a good deal and leads an active social life.”
The dress in the advertisement below is one of my favorites. I love the trim framing the bust and on the pockets, not to mention the cute little bow! And how about those shortie gloves and turban? Fab finishing touches!
And we just happen to have one lovely black organza cocktail dress with this label available at Blue Velvet Vintage.
Rodgers was not only known for the clothes he made, but also for the clothes he collected. He had very impressive and extensive collection of historical costumes that are now on display at Kent State University. Rodgers and Silverman donated much of their time and money to KSU, hosting fashion shows, organizing fundraisers and developing new ideas. And their donations funded The Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising. The school opened at KSU in 1983 and is now recognized as one of the top fashion schools in the country. The Kent State University Museum houses the Rodgers/Silverman collection.
These two men made some beautiful clothes in their time – but more importantly they helped to create a place where fashion education and history can continue on!
Have a glamorous day!