French Underwear, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1916
For the next theme post would you rather see Victorian-Edwardian ladies déshabillé or clothing in La couleur noire?
The Met says: “The silhouette of the 1910s is a revival of the Directoire and Empire styles, but here it is blended with a turn-of-the-century monobosom. Once again, a new silhouette was founded in reference to past style. The revealing neckline conforms to an unsupported bust, creating a soft, languorous silhouette.”
This is going to bother me so much, I recognize that motif from somewhere. Is it related to Marie Antoinette maybe?
TThe motif of the three ostrich plumes is from the coat of arms of the Prince of Wales, adopted after the Battle of Agincourt
Edit again: I didn’t think it was a fleur de lys. I do know what that looks like! It reminded me of something from Marie Antoinette’s bed but now I’m thinking I might have gotten that confused with one of the beds at Hampton Court.
Oh m gosh I feel so terrible. I don’t know why but all my alerts for new messages have been switched off. I have so many messages sitting in my inbox that I didn’t even know where there. I know for a fact that one of them is from August. I also have a response to a message that I know I replied too asking me why I never replied. So I’m not sure if they aren’t going through or I don’t know?!
If you have sent me an important message in the past few months and I never replied I’m so sorry (if you still remember it) could you please send it again. I am so sorry, I feel horrible. I promise I’m not ignoring anyone on purpose.
Stage Worn Opera Gown and Original Massive Slip! This EXTRAORDINARY, SUMPTUOUS gown arrived to me from the owner and WOWed me! And as you can see from my website, it takes a lot to WOW me!!! The gown weighs an astonishing 9 pounds and the half slip under weighs ANOTHER 9 pounds!!! I have no idea how they moved in these gowns, but they did! I have photos (don’t come with the gown, just up on the website) of the original sketches by Michael Stennett (thank you Michael!!). The gown is in a wearable size of 35” bust, 27” waist and 41” long from waist to hem in front, 70” long in back. Excellent condition!! This gown was designed by Mr. Stennett for Susan Patterson and created by the San Francisco Opera Company, and then worn by June Anderson the following year for the same production. June Anderson’s name is inside the gown, and Susan Patterson’s name is inside the slip. Huge gold bullion tassels hang down the front, metallic embroidered fabrics…. just a masterpiece! Breathtaking! NEW LISTING!
In April I started to panic because I had three massive hats I needed to take on the train for my 1912 fashion lecture. I logged on, found a lovely vintage green hatbox, paid ten quid for it and promptly forgot about the problem. The hatbox arrived a week later and I was panicked because my Merry Widow hat box ended up being a Cloche hat box. I figured it wasn’t worth the hassle of returning it and the box was so lovely I couldn’t bear to return it. The label was in perfect condition and the ombre green satin ribbons looked like they had never been touched. The turning point was when I opened the box. The scent of the most beautiful flowers danced around my room and I knew the box had found a home. So it became my jewelry box and like most of the piece I own, it became a cherished piece of history that I was in charge of.
THEN last night I was working on the new blog post and found the photo I just posted above (unfortunately the box in the photo doesn’t look like it’s seen the best of days) accompanied by this text: ”The elegant paper label reads..
Fleurs, Plumes, Coiffures
7, Rue Pasquier Paris
…upon the marvelous oval hatbox of green carton, complete with a lid and rayon ribbon carrying strap. Founded in Paris in 1895, Judith Barbier offered jewelry, hats artificial flowers and other creations to the carriage trade.
In very good condition save for normal wear and slight fading, and perfect for use in a display.
Measure: 4” high x 6 1/4” wide x 4 1/4” deep …
AND THIS PRICE:
A quick wiki translation from the original French text tells me that “Judith Barbier house is a house designers of ornaments, hats , artificial flowers for high fashion in the early twentieth century. The house has also released several fragrancesunder his own label in the 1920s. Judith Barber SA was founded in 1895 in Paris in the 20th century, at 7 rue Pasquier. Several flavors (Sheet Black Barbier des Isles, Jasmin) were created in 1927 Home, artisanal debut has industrialized the production under the direction of Alfred and Jean Martory Martory .House Judith Barbier known in many countries , provided several courts of Europe, Houses Cartier Christian Dior , Chanel , Balenciaga , , it has grown to international selling some of her creations at Macy’s in New York.”
Who knew my little box had such a wonderful history?
So proud and honoured to have an article published in the Autumn 2012 Costume Society of the UK Newsletter.
Brooch with cameo of Queen Victoria (front above, back below)
By Félix Dafrique; cameo by Paul Lebas (active 1829-70)
Shell, gold, enamel, emeralds and diamonds
Museum no. M.340-1977
This brooch was shown at the Great Exhibition in London in 1851, perhaps to attract the queen’s attention during one of her many visits to the exhibition. The image was taken from a portrait that showed the queen in Garter robes.
The Parisian jeweller Félix Dafrique revived a Renaissance style of jewel called ‘commesso’ (meaning ‘joined’). The cameo was cut by Paul Lebas, a well-regarded sculptor and gem engraver, who often exhibited at the Paris Salon. His most prominent works included cameo portraits of the French royal family.
The brooch was shown at the Great Exhibition, where over 6 million visitors viewed more than 13,000 exhibits.
In carving the cameo, Lebas probably followed this engraving. The original portrait shows the queen facing the other way, but the engraving is in reverse.
Sully was a society portraitist from Philadelphia. On a visit to London in 1837 he was commissioned to paint a portrait of the new queen. He was delighted with her ‘sweet tone of voice, and gentle manner’. She, in turn, was pleased with the portrait, which highlighted her best features: her shoulders and the curving line of her neck.”
Recently I asked a question on whether or not antiques should be worn which sparked a wonderful debate on the value we place on historic items. The popular opinion was that antiques were meant to be cherished. A month ago I was examining a heap of dirty fabric when I caught sight of an embroidered scallop. Recognizing the piece for what it was I bought the pile with the hopes that I might be able to rejuvenate it.
From that dusty pile I was not only able to restore the fabric to it’s original condition but, I was able to give the piece a new life. The gown is entirely hand stitched and I made sure that my best stitches went into attaching the antique net to the side panels of modern net.
The ball gown was worn to the Regency Society of Tennessee’s 2nd annual ball. The antique net is courtesy of a dodgy vendor at the local market and the swiss batiste was purchased from The Lace Cottage. I’m very thankful to the Travellers Rest Plantation & Museum for allowing me to take photos on their stunning ground and to my brillaint Mother for styling my hair!
While earthbound mortals watched the darkened heavens for a celestial display from the Perseid meteor shower, I found a few solitary stars that landed in a grassy field in Rock Castle, Tennessee. They hovered for a while in the half-light and danced in unison on fairy feet to the sound of a muffled symphony. Just for these few moments their radiance illuminated my soul and brought a warmth to my heart. Thank you to the members on the Regency Society of Tennessee for inviting me to the August Regency Ball and allowing me to be a part of your effervescent revelry.