Silk suit by Lore Maria Wiener
This green silk dress and cropped jacket were made by Vancouver designer Lore Maria Wiener. A native of Bremen, Germany, Mrs. Wiener began apprenticing as a dressmaker at age sixteen. In 1940, Wiener moved to Shanghai with her father, a converted Jew, to flee the Nazis’ occupation of her homeland. In China she met her husband, a native of Vienna, with whom she later moved to Vancouver to escape the Chinese civil war. Upon her arrival on the Canadian west coast, Mrs. Wiener started her own dress design business which flourished. She attributed its growth to her European accent, which was received by Vancouverites as a sign of expertise. The high quality material, perfect construction and fine detailing of this piece are examples of the elegant and timeless designs which were more likely to have been the root of her success. This piece was donated to the museum by one of Vancouver’s best known textile artists, Penny Gouldstone.