Evening dress; of black wool jersey knit with sheer black silk chiffon insets: high neckline; long fitted sleeves; fitted bodice; deep V inset of black silk chiffon down center front from the neckline to just above the navel; A-line ankle length skirt; large inverted V shaped inset of sheer black chiffon that begins just below center front crotch and extends down to the hem; center back zipper.
When Bonwit Teller, a high-quality ladies' apparel store opened in Chicago in 1949, the city buzzed with excitement. An advertisement in the Chicago Tribune proclaimed, "Chicago's most beautiful shopping section welcomes a great new store . . . Michigan Avenue salutes you Bonwit Teller." After two decades at the corner of Michigan and Pearson, the store moved into the base of the John Hancock Center in 1970, occupying the location until 1990. Bonwit Teller was among the first to promote and sell clothing by Rudi Gernreich, one of the most innovative fashion designers of the 1960's and 1970's. Mrs. Barbara Robinson Ralph purchased this alluring dress, intended to be worn without a bra, at Bonwit's new location in the Hancock Center.