Fashion Hall of Obscurity – Chuck Howard

Design for Townley, 1966

Chuck Howard, was one of those designers of the postwar era that gave American fashions a distinctly American look. Born in Cochrane, Georgia in 1927, Howard was stationed in Hawaii as a tail gunner in World War II. Courtesy of the G.I. Bill, Howard studied dress design in Paris after the war and then settled in New York.

Vogue pattern, c. 1970

He first worked as a photographer’s model before working as a sketcher for New York designers including: David Crystal, Bill Blass, Anne Klein, and Richard Cole. After becoming the designer for Townley in the mid 1960s he began designing under his own name as well as creating a pattern line for Vogue until 1974 when he closed his own company and returned to Anne Klein to design their Studio Line.

In the late 1970s, he left the fashion world to open a restaurant in the theatre district with his partner Edward Vaughan. When they closed the restaurant in the early 1980s they moved to Saba in the Dutch Antilles. Howard died in 2002.

About Jonathan

Jonathan Walford is a fashion historian and co-founder of the Fashion History Museum in Cambridge, Ontario. The FHM maintains a collection of nearly 12,000 artifacts dating from the mid 17th century to the present. Jonathan has authored various books and museum catalogues, including The Seductive Shoe, Shoes A-Z, Forties Fashion, 1950s American Fashion, and Sixties Fashion.
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