Blouses and dress in printed silk fabric by E. J. Wimmer.
Blouses and dress in printed silk fabric by Eduard Josef Wimmer-Wisgrill (1882-1961, established in 1907 the fashion department of the Wiener Werkstätte), Vienna 1912. Vienna Secession (Wiener Werkstätte).
Eduard Josef Wimmer-Wisgrill, born on 2 April 1882 in Vienna (Austria) and died on 25 December 1961 in the same city, was an Austrian industrial designer, architect and fashion designer. Active in the first half of the 20th century, Eduard Wimmer is best known for his work in jewellery and clothing for the Wiener Werkstätte, as well as for his contributions to the field of modern architecture.
In 1910, the Wiener Werkstätte applied for a dressmaking licence and, that summer, began selling women’s fashion in the spa town of Karlsbad (now Karlovy Vary in the Czech Republic). Rumour had it that the creation of the fashion department of the Wiener Werkstatte was the result of Wimmer’s visit to the Palais Stoclet in Brussels. He was apparently surprised by Madame Stoclet’s French-designed clothes, the only items not signed by Hoffmann, which he felt broke the harmony of the house’s design.
Wimmer’s couture was praised for its originality. He incorporated less geometry into his designs than his predecessors Hoffmann and Moser. His work was strongly inspired by nature, often including floral forms, leaves and plant motifs. He also drew inspiration from non-traditional folk textiles.
The famous French designer Paul Poiret visited Vienna when the Wiener Werkstätte published its first fashion collections in 1911. Poiret returned later that year because he had liked Wimmer’s designs so much and bought many of them to take back to Paris. He even used some of Werkstatte’s textiles in his own work. Wimmer’s influence on Poiret was mutual; Wimmer was dubbed the “Poiret of the Viennese” by the press, because of his Parisian silhouettes.