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Help with Bianchi Wedding Gown

Discussion in 'PUBLIC Vintage Fashion - Ask Questions Get Answers' started by Dan Kitchen, Jun 6, 2014.

  1. Dan Kitchen

    Dan Kitchen Registered Guest

    Hello all,

    I've been trying to find out a bit more about my wife's wedding gown. We bought it in Ireland back in 2010 knowing it was a vintage dress and I always intended to find out more about it.

    I wonder if anyone here knows more about the firm Bianchi? I've not had much joy searching for history on the company on the internet other than the information within the labels section on this site. I'd love to be able to date the dress and perhaps find out more about it's styling and more about the designer.

    For information, my wife is a UK size 10 and she is 5'10" tall.

    Thanks in advance!









  2. Linn

    Linn Super Moderator Staff Member

  3. lkranieri

    lkranieri VFG Member

    The firm was named for/by wedding gown designer was Phyllis Bianchi and HERE is a 1971 article about her.

    HERE is a bit more family information about her...and another INTERESTING ARTICLE about Phyllis Bianchi Lange.

    HERE is an obit for her. [EDITED to add that I just noticed that I can see the obit because I am automatically signed into my HiBeam account, so you may not be able to see it]
  4. Rue_de_la_Paix

    Rue_de_la_Paix VFG Member

    I would date that gown to the late 1960s to early 1970s. The embellishments and fabric are nearly identical to my wedding gown from the time period, although the bodice styling looks more like a 1960s dress. Your wife is beautiful in that dress.
  5. Dan Kitchen

    Dan Kitchen Registered Guest

    Thanks for your quick replies.

    The articles I found on HiBeam were great. Thanks Ikranieri for the links.

    It looks like the story of the House of Bianchi didn't really end well what with the company changing hands a lot and then disappearing overnight. It looks like their designs were very popular in the 50's, 60's and 70's. Along with Priscilla of Boston they put Boston on the map for wedding gown design with both companies having connections to famous brides, president's daughters and TV characters. In its prime, Bianchi was producing 40 different dress designs each season! I was hoping to get our dress tied down to a model name but that doesn't look too likely now.

    Thanks again for all your help. It's been an interesting little research project.
  6. PSAKnits

    PSAKnits Registered Guest

    I found your question of researching your wife's gown and this thread very interesting. After being married for almost 43 years, I decided it was time to open my sealed " wedding dress chest" and see what my dress looked like again and what to do with it.

    I was married in Los Angeles in November of 1971. I found that it is a bianchi dress and I am not really sure if this is worth something or I should save it for dress up for my granddaughters ;). It is a high neck, long sleeved, long train, empire waisted ,beaded gown. The label says bianchi of Boston and New York and doesn't have other cities listed. It isn't white , sort of yellowish ivory, and I think that it is the yellowing of age, as I believe it was white. I don't have a picture to share at the moment but can get some.
    Can anyone suggest the best way to figure this out? I googled it and that's how I got to this forum. I didn't really find much helpful info on etsy or the other sites.
    Thank you for any help
    P.s. Your wife looks gorgeous in her dress!!!
  7. Retro Ruth

    Retro Ruth Administrator Staff Member

    Hi and welcome to the forums. What are you trying to figure out, the value of the dress, whether the yellowing is from age, or something else?

    We don't help with valuations here, as stated in the forum terms and rules, partly because there are too many variables that affect what something is 'worth'. You can search eBay sold listings for comparable dresses, to give you an idea of what it might sell for.

    If you need other help with the dress, then yes, please post pictures and ask questions!
  8. PSAKnits

    PSAKnits Registered Guest

    Hi Ruth,
    I was just trying to get a suggestion of how to figure out a range of its value, web sites, stores, etc. I wasn't asking anyone on here to value it. I have looked on eBay but really haven't seen anything like my dress to compare it to. At the moment my wedding pictures are put away due to a remodeling job so I can't see the original color to have anything to compare it to. I will keep looking and if anyone has another suggestion, feel free to let me know. If the dress isn't worth much, I will just put it away for dress up when granddaughters visit it, if it's worth hundreds of dollars, or more, I will pursue selling it.
    Thanks for your response.
  9. Retro Ruth

    Retro Ruth Administrator Staff Member

    Hi Ann,

    Beyond looking online for similar items, and seeing how they are priced, I'm not sure what else to suggest. If there are consignment stores in your area you could perhaps ask them. Ebay completed listings are useful because you see what things actually sold for, and what didn't sell, rather than the seller's listing price which may or may not be achieved. If you can't find a Bianchi dress, I suggest you look for dresses of a similar era, style and quality.

    But remember the price you personally can achieve depends on many factors, not just the dress itself. An experienced seller with a good reputation, a history of selling, and a mailing list of followers, is likely to achieve a higher price than someone who is selling for the first time. Where you can sell it, what buyers you can reach, how well you can present the dress, what costs will be involved in getting it ready for sale, are all factors to consider. This is why it's difficult to offer advice on value.

    I hope that helps.
  10. PSAKnits

    PSAKnits Registered Guest

    Very informative Ruth. I appreciate your help. I will check more online and then see if any of my local stores will be of any value in this decision.
    Again thank you!

    KATRINA LERYN Registered Guest


    KATRINA LERYN Registered Guest

    WIN_20140902_152439.JPG WIN_20140902_152423.JPG
  13. Dan Kitchen

    Dan Kitchen Registered Guest

    Hi Katrina,

    I'm glad you have found the dress interesting. We still have it and it's still a gorgeous example of a classic style.

    Do you redo the gowns to sell on again? Is the dress you have of a similar style?

  14. jessicakhill

    jessicakhill Registered Guest

    Hi Dan,
    First of all, your wife looks gorgeous in that dress.
    If you wanted to learn more about the House of Bianchi,
    you will definately learn more from me, considering I am
    Bianchi's great-granddaughter. the House of Bianchi franchise started as a
    child's clothing wear, created by Phyllis's mother. Soon after Phyllis was
    given the company, she changed it to Wedding dresses. Now, my great grandmother
    was an amazing person. She worked so hard, and made every dress she made
    spectacular. The whole family is from Boston, Massachusetts. Phyllis has a husband, who is now
    95, 4 daughters, 5 grandchildren, and 4 great grandchildren, one of them being me. As for the company,
    she retired in 1994, exactly the year my parents got married. My mom is beyond honored
    to have had her wedding dress be Bianchi's last design. I am so proud of it, that I will wear it in my
    wedding. It is beautiful, like all her dresses. But, sadly, at the age of 88, my great grandmother
    passed away due to alzheimer's. Keep that dress because 1. it is GORGEOUS and 2. they are no
    longer being made, and it is very valueable.
  15. NancyNC

    NancyNC Registered Guest

    Dan, your wife is stunning in a beautiful gown. And, Jessica, I wore a Bianchi gown in 1977. I saw an ad and bought it through a store in Tallahassee, FL. It doesn't fit me now, but I loved it. Just looked at it today, and it is so well made. Thank you..
    GemGem likes this.
  16. Kate in New Orleans

    Kate in New Orleans Registered Guest

    I too wore a Bianchi design in 1975 - instantly fell in love with her vision. Our wedding celebration began late afternoon and ended just short of dawn. Heck of day - hell of a party!! My dress took a beating. It was months before I saw it again (due to a scheduled move). I assumed the dress was ruined and simply left it in a closet for years. Forty-two (42) years to be exact. This week I dismantled the dress and washed it (with the exception of the beaded top and sleeves). Much to my amazement, the Qiana fabric is as bright, beautiful and flowing as the day it arrived. My question is: KATRINA LERYN are you still re-doing Bianchi dresses? If interested, contact me at your convenience.
    GemGem likes this.
  17. Joheff

    Joheff Registered Guest

  18. Joheff

    Joheff Registered Guest

    Your great grandmother made gorgeous dresses. When in high school in 1962, my friend and I took a bus from Sacramento to San Francisco to go to I Magnin to try on Bianchi Wedding Dresses. She was engaged to marry after graduation and wanted to wear a Bianchi Gown for her wedding in 1963. I was a seamstress and I was very impressed with the construction and beauty of Bianca gowns. My friend got married in 1963 but I am not sure of her brand of gown. I was married in September of 1965 and I knew I had to wear a Bianchi gown which I purchased through Macy’s in Sacramento. My dress is gorgeous in off white silk with traditional waist, long bottoned sleeves and self bottoned back. Simple cut slightly flared skirt with self train. My cousin wore it two years later and my granddaughter wants to consider it as a possibility for her to wear one day. She called me this morning to tell me that if she wears my gown she may be told she is copying Megan Merkle’s gown. There are many differences but as soon as I saw The Duchess of Suffox’s gown I thought it looked a lot like mine. So I hope that in you great grandmothers celestial playground she is looking at Megan’s gown to see which one of the Bianca designs may have influenced the Duchesses designer!
    GemGem likes this.
  19. Michelle Renee

    Michelle Renee Registered Guest

    I too am hoping someone might be able to help me date a Bianchi Bianchi Label 2.JPG dress 2.JPG dress 5.JPG dress 6.JPG dress 7.JPG dress 9.JPG dress 10.JPG dress. I stumbled upon this beautiful wedding gown and just could not resist it. The label, as shown, indicated it was created when Bianchi was only located in New York and Boston. Can anyone offer an approximate age based on this label. I assume the dress dates back to pre-expansion to other cities making it perhaps older. Bianchi Label 2.JPG dress 2.JPG dress 5.JPG dress 6.JPG dress 7.JPG dress 9.JPG dress 10.JPG
    GemGem likes this.
  20. Inalvis

    Inalvis Registered Guest

    This might be 3 years late but I was doing some research on Bianchi's gowns since I will be wearing my fiance's grandmothers dress for my wedding. The label of her dress looks exactly like yours and she got married in 1961. The dress is very different than yours but it's gorgeous. So well made and timeless. I imagine your dress is from about that time frame as well.
    GemGem likes this.

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