Remembering Mrs. Bloomingdale

It is with sadness that the FIDM Museum is sharing the passing of Mrs. Alfred Bloomingdale. Betsy Bloomingdale became a founding donor to the FIDM Museum in 1977, giving a selection of Dior, Courrèges, and Givenchy haute couture from her wardrobe. Over the years, she donated over 180 beautiful ensembles and hundreds of croquis to our Museum.  In 2009, we curated a very special exhibition celebrating these remarkable donations and her amazing style. Working with her on High Style: Betsy Bloomingdale and the Haute Couture was an experience we cherish. Mrs. Bloomingdale welcomed us into her home with graciousness and kindness. We learned so much from her during our conversations as we organized the exhibition, which ultimately won the Richard Martin Exhibition Award from the Costume Society of America, given yearly to the best fashion exhibition in the United States. Mrs. Bloomingdale was instrumental in the growth and success of the FIDM Museum over the past forty years. We will miss her very much.

–Kevin Jones, Curator & Christina Johnson, Associate Curator, FIDM Museum

 “All of it was a special world in a special time. Those days if you could have these beautiful clothes made it was a wonderful thing. And I was very lucky.” –Betsy Bloomingdale


Christina’s office bookshelf. Christina and Kevin with Mrs. Bloomingdale at the High Style exhibition opening. October 17, 2009.

2 responses to “Remembering Mrs. Bloomingdale


    I just came across Mrs. Bloomingdale’s obituary online. As I have read the FIDM Museum blog the last couple of years her name has been often credited for her generous gifts. I know she has been an amazing supporter of the institution and the museum. I know you will all miss her.

  2. Ezrha Jean Black says:

    The end of an epoch — there has never been anyone quite in her fashion class (at least in L.A.). She understood the haute couture to her bones, wore it regally, and supported its designers and craftsmen & women richly. Whatever her politics, she was an enthusiastic supporter of the fashion world, its greatest designers and their art, and design generally. I don’t think her role as a great hostess should be underappreciated, either. She knew something of the art of entertaining and did it with grace and originality. She understood something of the redemption of charm & beauty — and lived it.

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