Joy Kingston Collaborations

HHope Skillmanope Skillman Schary: February 16, 1908 – May 24, 1981

Hope Skillman was one of the first American textile designers, and she rose rapidly in the fashion industry as a creative stylist. Born in Grand Rapids, Mich., Hope graduated from Goucher College near Baltimore and began her career in New York City in the early 1930’s. She worked for the Cohn-Hall-Marx Company and the Tabin-Picker Company before forming Hope Skillman Inc. in 1942, and later Skillmill Inc., which she headed until her retirement in the early 1960’s. For many years Mrs. Schary employed only women in her company.

She was widely known as a producer of high-quality cottons, selling her creations to leading designers and stores. Hope was a longtime member and officer of Fashion Group Inc., an organization of 5,000 women in the fashion industry. She served as the group’s president from 1958 to 1960.

After retiring, Mrs. Schary turned her attention to women’s rights. She served as president of the National Council of Women of the United States from 1970 to 1972 and from 1976 to 1978, and she was for many years the council’s representative to the International Council of Women. She also represented the National Council of Women on many commissions in Washington, among them the Joint Commission for Correctional Manpower and Training and the Bicentennial Commission. In addition, she served on the board of directors of the Council of National Voluntary Organizations.

In 1934 she married Saul Schary and they resided in New Milford, Connecticut and Manhattan.

Kingston Skillman Dress

Dress designed by Joy Kingston, Fabric designed by Hope Skillman