Wednesday, April 25, 2012

1910 Gold Silk Dress

Lovely floor length gold silk crepe dress, with a slightly higher than natural waist. It sports a higher square neckline, and just a hint of a pigeon front. The outer sleeves are cut in the kimono style, as a part of the bodice, and notched on the outside. The under sleeves are separate from the bodice, more fitted, and covered in 1” tucks. 
Both collar and sleeves are decorated with a beautiful hand made lace. The lace crosses the outer part of the bodice, and lines the split front of the dress, as well as creating a V-shape on the back of the bodice. Inside the lace V, the front of the bodice is covered in tucks similar to the under sleeves. 
Closures on this dress are a little confusing. The bodice lining fastens down the center front with hooks and eyes, but the outer dress fabric does not fasten here at all, because it is partially sewn to the lining, and simply hangs closed. The rest of the dress fastens with hooks and eyes starting at the point of the lace V in front and proceeding down along the lace line on the left side of the dress. The closures are well hidden in the fabric.
The fabric of this dress is very delicate and lightweight. It is amazing how wonderful it has held up in storage. The lace is in less perfect condition unfortunately. Time and moisture have caused it to become yellowed and stained.
This garment is probably from 
very close to the year 1910, given that it shows some of the sleeve characteristics of a year or two earlier, but a silhouette that is similar to dresses made a year or two later.
Bust: 41"
Waist: 33"
Hips: 60"
Neck to Waist Front/Back: 13/11.5"
Armscye to Armscye Front/Back: 17/16.5"
Skirt Length: 41

Blog Post By Kelsey Oliver :) My final post

Friday, April 13, 2012

1950s Wedding Gown

This dress is easily my favorite piece in our collection. Its a wedding gown from the 1950s made from a heavy synthetic fabric, netting, and lace. The skirt of this garment is full and floor length,  with an underskirt  made of the heavier synthetic fabric and slightly narrower than each successive layer of netting. There are three layers of netting in all, and the outer most has a finished edge. The skirt ends in back in a long full net train.

The bodice of the gown is fitted, with darts on either side and in front, and is also made of a heavier fabric overlaid with netting. The lace at the neck comes down into a deep V in front but covers enough to remain modest. The necklinemakes a kind of scalloped shallow V, and comes almost off the shoulder, but not quite. The look is very 50s. There are also Vs in the lace at each sleeve, and matching lace at the slightly lowered waist. 
This lace is made with a mesh base covered in embroidery and cutwork. It's scalloped on one side and pointed on the other. 
The short fitted sleeves are made entirely of gathered mesh, overlain with lace.  In back, a long row of mesh covered buttons fastens the back of the dress to below the waist.
This garment is fairly simple in design and construction, but it beautifully captures the essence of the 1950s. And it's in very good shape, especially considering its white and made mostly of netting. The fabric shows slight yellowing all over making it a light cream color, but other than that shows no damage.

Bust: 34"

Waist: 25"

Hips: 60"

Neck to Waist Front/Back: 10.5"/11"

Armscye to Armscye Front/Back: 17"/19"

Skirt Length: 38" (Not Including Train)

Blog Post By Kelsey Oliver :)