Paris to Hollywood Exhibition Access Guide

Section 3

Admired by the Couturiers

Véronique’s parents paved the way for her to become a fashionable Parisian. Her father was an architect, and her Russian mother was an artist. As a reporter for the newspaper France-Soir, Véronique kept up with politics and science, as well as the latest trends in the theater, literature, art, and restaurants. When she became Mrs. Peck, the couture houses were eager to be associated with the high-profile wife of a beloved actor. For this reason, Véronique was able to acquire, from time to time, the original prototype created by the couturier that was modeled in the fashion show.

Decades of Style

Through the decades, Véronique’s style was both classic and au courant (of the moment). She was aware of and responsive to evolving trends in fashion and culture. In the fifties, she followed the refined custom of an outfit for every occasion: sportswear for leisure moments, tailored suits for urban daywear, and elegant short dresses for cocktail hour. In the sixties, she loved vivid colors inspired by Pop art, as seen in Saint Laurent or Givenchy’s graphic patterns. She also embodied Emilio Pucci’s dolce vita attitude with his iconic prints. In the seventies, she championed the jet-set style of Thea Porter, who designed flowing dresses stitched together from fabrics the designer bought while traveling in the Middle East. In the eighties, Véronique wore tailored ensembles emblematic of the powerful modern woman.

Shoes

Véronique’s shoe collection includes several famous labels, such as Charles Jourdan, Valentino, and Halston. Notable among them are the stilettos with “comma” heels—the signature of master designer Roger Vivier. The riding boots exemplify the Yves Saint Laurent style.

Handbags

Véronique favored emblematic leather companies like Fendi, Gucci, and Hermès. The iconic “Kelly” bag by Hermès is made of crocodile skin.

Scarves and Gloves

Véronique loved to complete her look with the addition of a scarf tied around her neck or her head. Shown here are brightly colored geometric prints by Yves Saint Laurent and Thea Porter. In the 1950s, fashionable ladies like Véronique wore gloves for almost every elegant occasion—wrist-length for daywear and up to the elbows or longer with evening gowns.

Hats

These hats are from famous couture houses such as Balenciaga, Givenchy, Guy Laroche, and Saint Laurent, as well as designers like Sonia Rykiel and milliners such as Elvis Pompilio. The black felt hat is emblematic of the Saint Laurent style. A rare masquerade mask is signed by Jean Barthet, one of the most famous milliners of the 1950s in both Paris and Hollywood.

Jewelry

Véronique had a large, diverse collection of costume jewelry in order to pair the most appropriate pieces with each look. She could choose from classic pearls and brooches or more cutting-edge pieces by designers like Céline, BillyBoy, and Kenneth J. Lane.

Paris to Hollywood: The Fashion and Influence of Véronique and Gregory Peck is organized by the Denver Art Museum and presented by Joy Dinsdale. Additional support is provided by Bridget and John Grier, the generous donors to the Annual Fund Leadership Campaign, and the residents who support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD). Promotional support is provided by 5280 Magazine and CBS4.

The Denver Art Museum is grateful for the generous funding of the textile art and fashion department by the Avenir Foundation and Nancy Lake Benson.