La Robe De Soir

The Kyoto Costume Institute has some amazing items in their collection including this circa 1902 evening dress/ball gown (where one ends and the other begins can sometimes be a bit ambiguous). Unfortunately, we don’t know much about this except to say that it’s definitely reflects early 1900s style and uses an artfully arranged combination of lace and fashion fabric (no doubt a silk satin). The pink-colored silk satin fashion fabric has a series of vertical stripes along with two vine-like lines that appear to be beaded/jeweled.

Evening Dress, c. 1902; Kyoto Costume Institute

But what’s more striking is how the fashion fabric’s hem has been cut so as to mimic a leaf, longer in the front (and presumably the back) and shortening on the sides. Framing this is a layer of ivory lace that forms a complete underskirt (and no doubt backed with a lining). The bodice also has a layer of the same lave draped across the front. This is a brilliant style and we only wish that were more pictures available. We hope you’ve enjoyed this little pop of fashion history. 🙂



 

Soothing Nerves…

After a weekend of dealing with local fire dangers, there’s nothing that a few ruffles can’t soothe, even shattered nerves. 😉

 



Looking Forward…

From 2019 at the Prior Attire Ball…we hope that borders open this year so we can enjoy dress up time with friends again!

 



Looking Forward…

Some nice memories of the last time we were in Bath. We look forward to returning in 2022.  🙂


I actually finished and wore the blush silk gown, probably the last new thing for me for a while because of my wonderful client work…so no more hand sewing in hotel rooms! Taking a sewing break for two days, back to LA (and Angus!) on Monday. We truly want to live here (we’ve looked) and made so many friends. We know we act like over-enthusiastic goofy Americans, but our hearts are genuine, so we just laugh. One more day of Victorian fun, then it’s off to Heathrow…another day of sleep would be nice, too.



Conserving A Worth Evening Gown

Worth gowns are always a delight to look at but unfortunately, the years have not always been kind to these garments. Here’s a video of efforts to restore and preserve on specific 1897 evening dress that’s in the Olive Matthews Collection at the Chertsey Museum.

And here’s one view of the restored dress:

Worth, Evening Dress, 1897; The Olive Matthews Collection, Chertsey Museum (M.2017.013a–c)(Image 1897 © The Olive Matthews Collection, Chertsey Museum, Photographed by John Chase Photography)