Director of fashion brand Balmain Ginette Spanier , 1966. News Photo -  Getty ImagesJenny Yvonne "Ginette" Spanier (March 7, 1904 – April 18, 1988) was director of the House of Balmain, a Paris fashion-house, and was decorated for her wartime work. Nancy Spain had several lesbian affairs, most openly with Ginette Spanier, the (married) directrice of Balmain. Spanier may have had a liaison with Marlene Dietrich in 1959.

Spanier, who was Jewish, was born in Paris on 7 March 1904 and raised in Hampstead, London, England and attended Frognal School there.[1]

While in Paris as a buyer for Fortnum & Mason, she met Paul-Emile Seidmann, a doctor. In 1939, they married.[1] Shortly afterwards, during World War II, they fled Nazi-occupied Paris by bicycle. She was subsequently awarded the Medal of Freedom for assisting the American Army of Liberation.[1][2] Seidmann was made a Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur for his work with concentration camp survivors.[1]

After the war, the couple lived for many years on Paris' Avenue Maurice, and she became directrice (director) at Balmain from 1947 to 1976.[1] The first of her two volumes of autobiography, It isn't All Mink (1959), had a foreword by Noël Coward,[3] the second volume, And Now It's Sables (1970), had one by Maurice Chevalier. She appeared as a castaway on the BBC Radio programme Desert Island Discs on 21 June 1965.[4] She was also the guest on This Is Your Life on 9 February 1972.[5]

She retired, a widow, to London, and died there in April 1988.[1]

Ginette Spanier - Wikipedia

It Isn't All Mink ...Ginette Spanier... and Haute Couture - Vicki Archer


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