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Norman Norell

1960s Norman Norell Vintage Dress Black Taffeta w/ White Polka Dots

Regular price $1,200.00 Sale price $900.00 Save $300.00
1 in stock

This gorgeous 1960's vintage dress was designed by Norman Norell. The original owner was from a fashion dynasty and knew Mr. Norell personally! This fabulous black taffeta dress has medium white polka dots on the bodice and sleeves, large polka dots on the full skirt, and small polka dots on the original belt! 

This long vintage dress has full, cuffed sleeves and a banded high neck collar. There is a back zipper for closure and the dress is lined with a fine black organza fabric for fullness. It is a long dress with a 9" hem that can easily be let out for a customized longer length.

We estimate this dress to fit a modern day size 6/8 but please use the measurements as a guide for the best fit. This dress includes the original customer's name on a numbered label, the signature "front" label that Norman Norell used and his name is stamped on the belt. It is in excellent condition, with slight darkening on a few polka dots from age.

BUST: 36"

WAIST: 28"

HIPS: Free



LENGTH from top of shoulder to waist: 15"

LENGTH from waist: 36"

Provenance is very important to us, so we hope you will enjoy reading a little more about the woman who owned the beautiful dress and other Norman Norell dresses we are so honored to have in our collection. Her granddaughters provided this small glimpse into their family's rich fashion history:

The Meier, Schwartz and Sadowsky Families were prominent members of the fashion industry for 150 years. Reuben Sadowsky was a prominent real estate and garment tycoon in the 19th century, having erected the Sadowsky Building at 1372 Broadway in Manhattan, the first manufacturing site in “Garment Town”. Many of the Norell pieces that we are listing, including this dress, were originally designed for Reuben’s only daughter, Betty Sadowsky Schwartz. Betty Sadowsky married Harry Schwartz, who owned National Department Stores.

Harry Schwartz was a very close college friend of Oscar Hammerstein ( of Rogers & Hammerstein), and Harry was actually in Hammerstein’s wedding. Betty and Harry Schwartz would often attend openings of the Rogers & Hammerstein plays, among them “Away We Go” which later was re-titled and is now known as “Oklahoma”. Betty's granddaughters told us that several of the evening gowns we are selling were worn at events hosted by Rogers & Hammerstein.

Since Betty’s husband owned National Department Stores, the Schwartz family would regularly visit their stores around the country. Among the stores in the National Department Store chain was Lipman Wolfe & Company, which was located in the building across from Meier & Frank’s flagship store in Portland, Oregon.

On one of the Schwartz’s visits to Portland, they brought their daughter, and while there, she met a descendant of the Meier & Frank Company. Meier & Frank was a prominent chain of department stores founded in Portland and later bought by the May Department Stores Company (Macy’s). Meier & Frank operated in the Pacific Northwest from 1857 to 2006. The two eventually were married, thus joining two remarkable fashion families! Betty eventually moved to Portland to be near her daughter.

She and her daughter, often accompanied by a granddaughter or two, would travel to New York together to personally view Norman Norell's latest collections and to have pieces custom designed and custom fitted. It seems that Betty Schwartz's adoration of Norell's designs was passed on to her daughter!

We offer a large selection of designers and manufacturers that span the 20th and early 21st century. Sizing varies greatly, so we have outlined our measuring and size estimating process.

The best way to know if a vintage item will fit you is to take a garment that fits you well, similar to the one you are interested in purchasing, and measure it the way we measure ours. 


We lay all garments flat and measure as follows*:


BUST - under arm to under arm across the front and then double that measurement.  

Measure the WAISTBAND, widest part of the HIPS, widest part of the THIGH on one leg and width of the CUFF, then double those measurements

WAIST - find the smallest part of the garment if there isn't an obvious seam for the waist and measure across and then double that measurement.

LENGTH - Measure from the top of the waistband to the bottom of the cuff along the side seam.
HIPS - Find the largest part of the hip area and measure flat, then double that measurement. RISE - Measure from the crotch to the top of the waistband.
LENGTH - from the nape of the neck or the top of the shoulders, depending on the style of garment. We will measure to the waist when applicable, so that you can determine if it will fit your torso,  and then a waist down measurement. INSEAM - Measure from the crotch to the bottom of the cuff along the inside seam.

SLEEVES - measure from the top of the shoulder seam to the end of the sleeve.  When we think that the arm opening is particularly small, we will provide that measurement as well.**

*Fabrics with stretch will have some give, we will try to mention the range of measurements that will fit comfortably.

**With dolman sleeves, the size is an estimation based on the waist as the body seamlessly joins the sleeve.

Women's Clothing International Size Conversion Chart

Feel free to email us with specific questions about specific measurements that we may not have included that you need to know in order to feel confident about your purchase.  If you have a particularly long torso, short legs, long arms, etc.. we can help you determine whether or not a garment will work for your body.SaveSaveSave

At Modig, we pride ourselves in selling vintage items that are in excellent condition and ready to use. Everything in our inventory has been professionally cleaned and stored in a climate controlled, pest-free environment.

All of our items are pre-owned, and as such we do our best to mention any flaw in detail, including photographs when appropriate. Slight imperfections are part of the history of vintage garments, but it is our goal to make sure that you know exactly what you are getting when you shop with us.

Here is a guide to condition for our site:

MINT - In "as new" condition.  May include original tags or may appear unworn.

EXCELLENT - Very minor to no visible flaws found. May have been washed and worn, but was well taken care of and stored properly.

NOTE: Most of our items are included in the above categories unless stated otherwise. We only list items in the categories below if they are extremely rare, unique, or have an important label.

GOOD - Definitely wearable but might have a small hole, a spot we were unable to remove, or a tear that is not in the seam but in an inconspicuous spot. It might just be that the item doesn't appear as "crisp" as it would have been originally but is still a wonderful piece.

FAIR - When we sell garments in this category, it is mainly because they are from an important designer or rare pieces from the late 1800s or early part of the 20th century. They are generally fragile textiles, and are meant to be used for study or display purposes.

We have been selling vintage clothing for over two decades, and have many wonderful customers that have bought with us since the beginning. To build and maintain that kind of trust and relationship, we pride ourselves on cleanliness, proper storage techniques, and sharp eyes for flaws.



Please note that all orders have a 1-3 business day handling time in addition to the shipping times below. Please contact us before making your purchase if you need an item by a specific date so we can advise you on shipping and expedited handling.

Domestic shipping within the US (2-3 business days) for a flat fee. Domestic US orders over $150 have complementary shipping.

Domestic expedited shipping (1-2 business days) is available at checkout for a flat fee. Please contact us if you need something overnighted.

International Shipping (4-10 business days) for a flat fee based on item weight.

International shipping is complementary with orders over $500.

Expedited Global Express Guaranteed (1-3 business days) is available for a flat fee.

Please be familiar with your own customs policies and charges. The customer is accountable for any additional customs fees, taxes and/or charges. Modig is not responsible for any items damaged or lost by the shipping carrier.



We want your shopping experience with Modig to be as easy and hassle-free as possible. As such, we have extended our return policy in order to better address the needs of our customers.

To better guarantee your purchase, we encourage our customers to read all condition statements and review the detailed measurements provided for every item on our site. We also encourage you to ask any questions in advance before purchasing anything from us including sizing information, color clarification, etc.

We can easily accommodate exchanges or returns for store credit.

Returns are accepted if you follow the steps below:

1. We are contacted within 24 hours of receiving the item with written intent to return.

2. Once approved for a return, the item is postmarked for return within 48 hours of the notification.

3. Item is unworn with all tags attached and in the condition it was sent. If tags are removed and/or item has been worn or shows damage of any kind, we retain the right to refuse a refund for the item or deduct the cost of cleaning/mending from the return amount.

4. Buyer is responsible for return shipping charges and will not be reimbursed for the original shipping cost (this includes all custom fees, duties and taxes).

5. Returned item must be shipped with appropriate tracking and insurance. We can provide the return shipping label if requested, and the cost will be deducted from the final return amount.

Return Address:


1427 NW Raleigh St.

Portland, OR, 97209


Items NOT eligible for returns:

X Purchases from our Sale section

X Jewelry, handbags, shoes and accessories

X Lingerie and underthings

X Antique garments (1930's or earlier)

X No refunds are given for items damaged or lost by the carrier during shipping. We ship all items insured and the purchaser is to pursue any shipping claims with the carrier.