These costumes are all *very* similar…
Looks like Josephine may have worn it first (and topless) around 1927 in the Folies Bergere show “Un Vent de Folie”. George Barbier was most likely the costume designer.
But what do you think… are they recycling old costumes or is Josephine the trendsetter?
top: Josephine Baker by Walery, c1926. To promote her appearance in the Folies Bergere revue ‘Un Vent de Folie’ 1927
middle: Adelaide Hall by Walery, c1928. A publicity shot for the Paris run of “Blackbirds of 1928”
bottom: the chorus line at Club Prudhom , Washington DC by Scurlock Studio c1930
Josephine Baker by Walery c.1926
Look closely at the “feather bikini” covering her modesty, making her family friendly.
Source: Beinecke Library
Josephine Baker in Folies Bergere revue ‘Un Vent de Folie’ c1927 by Walery
Josephine Baker in Banana Skirt from the Folies Bergère production “Un Vent de Folie” 1927
(I should really work harder at accurately dating all these costumes - a summer project I think!)
Adelaide Hall in Blackbirds of 1928
American-born jazz singer Adelaide Hall was named Britain’s highest paid female entertainer in 1941.
(publicity shot for Broadway revue “Blackbirds of 1928”)