1961 Pink Chanel Suit

Research by Steven L. Brawley

  • Design and materials by Chanel
  • Procured through a personal friend and fashion scout of Jackie's from Chanel's fall 1961 collection
  • Jackie provided specific direction on the suit, requiring Coco Chanel to personally approve of Jackie's changes to original design
  • Purchase and tailoring through special arrangement by Chanel in Paris with Chez Ninon in New York City using what was called the "line for line" system put in place by Chanel (to maintain authenticity)
  • Deal was a way for Jackie to buy "American"
  • The size six bouclĂ© wool outfit was double-breasted, with six gold buttons and four pockets
  • Color described as raspberry pink, the thick quilted collar, and the trim on the sleeves and the pockets, were dark navy blue
  • Fabric supplied by Linton Tweeds
  • Dark navy blue silk blouse made by another manufacturer, the cost of the Chanel version was very pricey (even for Jackie)
  • Accompanying the suit was a trademark pillbox hat in matching raspberry pink
  • Jackie completed the look with a dark navy blue handbag matching the quilted collar, with a gold chain handle
  • Estimated cost of suit in 1961: $800-$1,000
  • Ensemble was one of President Kennedy's favorites, personally selecting it for the Texas trip - he said Jackie looked "ravishing in it"
  • Jackie refused to take off the bloodstained suit, wearing it until she returned to the White House in the early morning hours of Nov. 23
  • Stored in a box in her mother's attic for a period of time, and then sent to National Archives
  • Deeded by Caroline Kennedy to the National Archives
  • Currently in a special climate controlled storage facility at the National Archives in Maryland, along with the President's clothing from Nov. 22
  • The pillbox hat is missing

Worn on these dates:

  • November 12 & 14, 1961, Washington D.C.
  • March 26, 1962, London
  • September 26, 1962, Washington D.C.
  • October 15, 1962, Washington D.C.
  • October 24, 1962, Washington D.C.
  • November 22, 1963, Dallas, TX

Image copyright Jake Gariepy (Dapper and Dreamy) - Jackie's 1961 Chez Ninon (Chanel design) suit.

Copyright Steven L. Brawley, 2002-2015. All Rights Reserved.