We haven’t done a lot with the Teens Era lately but it doesn’t mean that we don’t like it. 🙂 Recently, we came across two circa 1912 formal dresses what we thought were spectacular, especially with their use of the color gold combined with gold metallic embroidery to create their effect. Both are dazzling and definitely caught our eye. Enjoy! 🙂
In yesterday’s post, we showed a circa 1912 presentation gown. Just for some variation, today we’re showing a very similar dress style from 1912-1913 by Gustave Beer:
Gustave Beer, Evening Gown, c. 1912 -1913; FIDM Museum
We were fortunately able to view this dress in person and get up fairly close to it. The silhouette follows a slender form created by flat (relatively speaking in comparison to the earlier s-bend corset) corsetry. However, at the same time, the geometric lines created by corsetry were offset by draping on the outer garments which was especially evident with more formal styles such as this one. The upper dress combines empire and kimono style elements, especially with the high waist combined with the loose drape-like shoulders.
This dress is constructed from a gold charmeuse trimmed with gold floral-patterned embroidery. Combined with the main dress is a short overskirt of black silk netting with jeweling, artfully cut so as to end at the high waist, giving emphasis to this area. The arrowhead curves of the outerskirt also points the viewer’s eye upwards; this dress is a masterful example of the use of vertical lines in fashion design. Below are closer views of the netted outerskirt:
Note the v-shaped gold plastron that is placed over the the silk net overskirt that gives further emphasis to the waistline.
Finally, this is a view of the train. It’s been cut in a diamond shape that gives full emphasis to the embroidery design:
In comparison with the dress in the previous post, we believe that this is a more dramatic dress yet both deliver a serious impact that only differs in the cut of the fabrics and the use of trim. Also, while both employ embroidery, this dress does so in a more tidy and controlled manner culminating with the diamond-shaped trim.
Just for a change of pace, today we feature this circa 1912 presentation dress:
Presentation Dress, c. 1912; Augusta Auctions
In terms of general silhouette, the dress definitely follows the convention of the time with its emphasis on a more slender, upright figure. This dress is constructed from a gold silk satin and trimmed with gold lace and embroidery. On the skirt is an asymmetrical fantastical embroidered floral design that curves around the dress front and places major emphasis on the right side. The dress appears to consist of a skirt that’s been constructed so as to give the effect of a double skirt on the side and has a long train. While the auction house description calls this a “presentation dress,” this could easily be a reception or evening dress of some type. Without more information on the provenance, it’s hard to tell. As with the skirt, the bodice is also asymmetrical with the emphasis placed on the left shoulder to balance the style effect.
Here’s a view of the dress back along with the train:
Here’s some close-up views of the dress that give a good view of the embroidery:
This dress is a good example of a gown meant for wear at the most formal of occasions and definitely displays the early teens design aesthetic. In future posts, we’ll be featuring more examples so stay tuned. 🙂
Close up of that incredible silk before it leaves my studio. I found this in a small stall in Montmartre, there’s enough for three more corsets…so don’t wait too long to reserve yours… 🎄
Waking up from our Christmas Coma and organizing projects for 2021. I love the few days between Christmas and New Year’s, everything is low key and restful…what projects are you dreaming up? 🙂
We at Lily Absinthe would like to wish everyone a very Happy Holidays and a Merry Christmas! 🙂 It’s been a rough year for all of us and we’re looking forward to a better new year.