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Valentina, a Russian Designer in America

Bella Neyman

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. East Europe, Russia, and the Caucasus 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Valentina Nikolaevna Sanina Schlee was a Ukrainian-born fashion designer. Known simply as Valentina, she was one of the most important American couturiers, having dressed many of the stars of Hollywood and Broadway. A chance encounter with Georgii (George) Matveyevich Schlee in 1919 at the Sebastopol railroad station, while escaping the Russian Revolution, changed the course of her life. With George producing theater and Valentina pursuing acting, the Schlees were married in 1921 and came to Amer

Valentina*

Kohle Yohannan

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Born in 1904 in the Kiev region of Russia, Valentina escaped the revolution in the late teens with her new husband and soon-to-be business manager, George Schlée, arriving in America in 1923 after several years spent in Paris, Athens, and various other European cities. Much like the French designer Coco Chanel, who offered as many versions of her colorful past as her admirers cared to indulge, Valentina was prone to invent and embroider her early life as it suited her. As a result, Valentina’s or

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