Paganne by Gene Berk-Vintage Designer Label to Look For

Paganne by Gene Berk Prints

Every so often I like to post about a vintage designer label that I think has not received the attention it deserves and should be on your radar when shopping .   Sort of like an undervalued stock pick,  it can still be had at a bargain price compared to similar and is destined to increase in value.

So if you’re a big fan of  60s and 70s mod abstract and geometric prints,  and can’t spend several hundred smackers on an authentic Pucci, Leonard of Paris or Lanvin,  then a fabulous, more affordable alternative is the Paganne by Gene Berk label.

Gene Berk actually studied to be a lawyer, but found it wasn’t for him and dropped out of law school. He ended up in the fashion industry merchandising menswear. From there he went on to creating sportswear for Oleg Cassini. In the late 1960s he started his own company, Paganne Ltd. He hand sketched his whimsical designs and sent them to Como and Milan to be transformed into screenprints. He designed the textiles first and then figured out how to incorporate them into clothing. Many of the same prints would be reconfigured different ways depending on the garment.

Paganne Maxi Dress 1974Paganne Lion DressPaganne Maxi Dress-1973 VoguePaganne outfits 1972

His clothes were made in silk jersey, cotton knits, velvets and Qiana nylon, which is the most plentiful and moderately priced.  Qiana  is a luxurious synthentic fabric that feels a lot like silk jersey and is washable. Paganne Qiana maxi dresses retailed for $100-150 back in the day. And according to this handy little inflation calculator  that would make them over $500.oo in today’s dollars!  But it is still possible to find them for less than that, and often much closer to the prices of 40 years ago when they were made!  This makes them a great value considering the quality construction, the beautiful screenprints and the fact they were made in Italy.

Here’s a few of my favs from around the interwebs

70s-paganne-dressIf this one was my size, I would buy it in a heartbeat!
Find it here at HK Vintage on Etsy  42Bust  $228

Paganne zebra print dress

Great black and white graphic zebra print Paganne dress.
42Bust $187 Find it here.

Paganne Egyptian print dressLove this deco inspired Egyptian motif
38b – $275 Find it at lastrigabianca on Etsy.


And,  I’ve got a few for sale on the site.

Paganne by Gene Berk Dresses

  1. 70s Blue geometric floral Paganne dress  36b 28-30w $125
  2. 70s Big Cat print maxi dress 40b  $179
  3. 70s Paganne Paris print dress 38b $159


Have a glamorous day!

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By | 2016-09-21T13:10:23-04:00 September 21st, 2016|Fashion, Labels to Look For|10 Comments

About the Author:

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.


  1. Theresa Campbell
    Theresa Campbell October 7, 2016 at 9:37 am

    Thanks Liz! It is always my pleasure to promote vintage designers who I think deserve more recognition.

  2. Avatar
    Liz October 6, 2016 at 5:00 pm

    Oh wow, so pretty! I have a dozen friends who would just love this designer. I will make sure to share this post with them. Thanks for bringing this designer to my attention 🙂

  3. Theresa Campbell
    Theresa Campbell September 25, 2016 at 8:13 am

    Yes, that blue one is definitely one of the more subdued of his prints, which makes it very versatile when it comes to accessorizing. You can carry off a lot of different looks. And happy fall to you too Jessica! I’m still in New England and can finally feel the crisp cool air and smells of autumn. One of the things I truly miss since I moved to Florida! But this year I was determined to stay and experience this lovely season. Looking forward to seeing more of your lovely vintage fall looks, btw ♥

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    Jessica Cangiano September 24, 2016 at 3:48 pm

    The vibrancy at work here is so invigorating and transfixing! Paganne really had a way with the bold and the punchy. That said, of all the examples you highlighted here, my fave is more on the understated side: the blue floral print from BVV (which, with the right accessories, could be taken in an early 40s – 60s direction, too). They’re all fabulous though for sure and such a blast to see!

    Many hugs & joyful start of fall wishes,
    ♥ Jessica

  5. Theresa Campbell
    Theresa Campbell September 22, 2016 at 11:03 am

    Wow. That is a good price. Too bad it won’t fit!!! The lion print is one of his more popular patterns. I can see why, as the bold black and white graphics are so eyecatching.

  6. Theresa Campbell
    Theresa Campbell September 22, 2016 at 10:55 am

    Vicki, Maurice dresses are great! Lots of mod geometric prints. They are becoming collectible as well. So if you see one for a bargain price, snap it up!

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    Vix September 22, 2016 at 10:34 am

    I love these especially the lion’s head maxi! There’s some great ones on Etsy, one is just £35 but sadly masses too big! x

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    Vicki September 22, 2016 at 8:54 am

    All these prints are beautiful. I especially like the first blue one and the pink one shoulder. They remind me of a Maurice dress I had a long time ago. Unfortunately I gave it away back when I was clueless about the value of vintage designer dresses.

  9. Theresa Campbell
    Theresa Campbell September 22, 2016 at 8:32 am

    Suzanne I can totally picture you in a Paganne dress. And once you become familiar with his screenprints, you’ll be able to spot them right away when you’re shopping, as they’re pretty distinctive. And up close, you can also identify by his signature printed on the fabric.

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    Suzanne September 21, 2016 at 9:54 pm

    I adore the first one featured here and that wonderful lion’s mane! I’ve never seen any of these dresses before but now I will be keeping my eyes peeled.


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