What is pertinent is the calmness of that beauty,
its sense of restraint.
Kazuo Ishiguro

Why does great design feel as fresh today as it did a century ago? The source of its timelessness can be found in the principles of nature; its roots tap into the deeply subtle veins of restraint. Design evolves by pushing the edge just a bit, but not too much. Style, a very personal form of art, is rooted in the principle of individuality as well as in restraint. For women, this is expressed as controlled sexuality. The greatest fashion designers are artists who understand this—Dior, Givenchy, Lavin, Chanel—as well as the photographers who have captured the distinctiveness of their work: Lillian Bassman, Irving Penn, Richard Avedon. Brilliant illustrators like Mats Gustafson push the edge a little further still, bringing restraint into the 21st century.

Lisa Fonssagrives, Vionnet, George Hoyningen-Huene, 1938
Christian Dior, Lillian Bassman, 1950
Mats Gustafson Watercolor
Dovima, Christian Dior, Richard Avedon, 1955
Audrey Hepburn, Givenchy, 1957
Mats Gustafson Watercolor
Anne St. Marie, Chanel, Lillian Bassman, 1958
Jacqueline Kennedy, 1960
Mats Gustafson Watercolor
Audrey Hepburn, Givenchy, 1961
Twiggy, Pierre Cardin, Bert Stern, 1967
Mats Gustafson Watercolor
Alber Elbaz, Lanvin, 2011
Alber Elbaz, Lanvin, 2013
Raf Simons, Dior, 2013
Alber Elbaz, Lanvin, 2014
Raf Simons, Dior, 2014
Mats Gustafson Watercolor