Berthe Hermance - Parisian Fashion Designer - 1920
Charming Afternoon Gowns, Designed for Gentle women, and a Most Interesting Line of Tailleurs, Lavishly Braided, Are Shown by This House
Berthe Hermance and her two partners, all three of the ex-firm of Bechoff-David, have been established for the last three years in the Champs-Elysées, and are now reaping the seeds of taste and patience in the shape of an extensive Parisian clientèle
An interesting set of tailor-mades are seen in the collection of Berthe Hermance. Blue and nègre velvets and duvetyns lend themselves to the classical winter shapes, enriched by a great deal of braiding in almost solid design at the sides of both coats and skirts, or with waxed satin simply striping and edging the seams.
There are frequent examples of big pockets bordered by fur or embroidered in appliqué. A powder blue duvetyn, pinched in at the waist, has braided collar, cuffs, pockets and sides.
A long, tight négre velours suit opens to show a very large and magnificent gold waistcoat. Plaids are prettily treated here. Grey and black plaid is seasonable; a plaid skirt is worn with a medium length blue jacket; over the latter is a cape much longer at the back and lined with the plaid.
The great specialty in this house is afternoon gowns, which figure most extensively; all varieties of blue, ranging from powder, nattier, royal, turquoise.
Persian, to flag and navy, are represented in serge, taffeta, satin and velvet. Hermance’ s dresses are designed for gentlewomen and, as such, achieve an appearance of quiet elegance and distinction.
Among the straight serge gowns, a good model of navy blue has a crossed bodice, the ends tied loosely in a loop in front. It is embroidered over the hips and sides in small brick silk checks.
Another, of the new blue serge with the red selvage, has a large square of the red-bordered serge as an apron in front, the sides hanging loosely and forming a sort of drapery.
There is much black satin combined with beige or black lace loops and wings; among the embroideries, which are plentiful, we find brocade designs in gray and brown braid, large round motifs, made of rows of black and white silk fringe.
Silver is extremely plentiful as lace and embroidery. A négre charmeuse has an apron of heavy silver lace darned over and over. Another black velvet sheath has huge taffeta points at the sides, wide enough to meet and overlap, both back and front.
Evening dresses are either of taffeta brocaded in silver and rather ample and puffy or closely draped across the front, tending upwards to the back in the case of satins and panne.
A very elegant royal blue velvet follows this line, while a cherry charmeuse, the bodice crossed in the back, has a jet belt which does not prevent the draped skirt from ending in a long loop at the left in front.
"Berthe Hermance" in the Garment Manufacturers’ Index, New York: The Allen-Nugent Co. Publishers, Vol. II, No. 2, September 1920: 26-27.