I have spent so long trying to find this image. I can’t begin to put into words how happy I am to have not only found where it is from but all of the different views that the Museum has graciously taken of the costume.
Bunka Gakuen Costume Museum
Empress Dowager Akinori (1849-1914)
I love the mix of cultures in this piece, how seamlessly the two are intertwined. It’s effortless and graceful. Note how the traditional chrysanthemum have been incorporated into Western fashion. It is so uniquely beautiful.
The original text reads: 大礼服（マント・ド・クール）は、明治時代から昭和戦前期の宮廷服である。女子の最高の礼服で、襟あきが大きく、袖無しか短い袖のドレスにトレーン（引き裾）を付けることが特色である｡本資料のボディスとトレーンは緋ベルベット、スカートには白繻子地を用い、それぞれに菊花を日本刺繍によって豪華に表している｡大きく膨らんだパフ･スリーブ、釣り鐘形のスカートなどの特徴は、明治20年代後半に調製されたことを示している｡
This court dress (manteau de cour) was worn as the imperial dress from Meiji (1868-1926) through Showa (1926-1989) period up to the beginning of WW2. The distinct features of this most formal type of women’s dress is the broad neckline, short or no sleeves, and a skirt with a long train. The original material of the bodice and the train is scarlet-coloured velvet, the skirt is made from white satin and shows the magnificent Japanese chrsyanthemum embroidery. The large puff sleeves and the bell-shaped skirt both show the typical production of the the late half of Meiji 20’s era (1892-1897).
(a huge thank you for this translation goes to the following)
Dressing Gown Iida Takashimaya, 1900 The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston: “Pink silk taffeta dressing gown in kimono style with embroidered naturalistic chrysanthemums and butterflies in polychrome silks. Silk plain weave lining, padded hem and pleat in back of robe. Full sleeves gathered at shoulders and trimmed with braided silk cord and tassles. Matching sash of pink silk taffeta with double-sided embroidery of chrysanthemums in green brown and pink polychrome silk with knotted silk fringe. Gown labeled: S. Iida “Takashimaya” Silks and Embroideries. Kyoto.”
Bohemian Iridescent Purple Chiffon Tea Gown
French, early 20th century
The calf length tunic with inverted V hem at front and point at back trimmed with metallic bronze fringe, the underdress of dusky blue jacquard with stylized chrysanthemum Deco pattern, small train at back trimmed in fur and metallic bronze passementerie lotus leaves, the same trimming the V-necked bodice and along shoulder down short kimono sleeves with briar stitching, two braids with faux tassels down center front, bronze lace trimmed inset with gold print on creme chiffon overlay, crushed wide chocolate velvet ribbon sash tied at back in bow with long streamers, size 2/4, labeled: Lichenstein Cie Modes/Paris/New York.
An embroidered gold tulle tabard, circa 1910-12, worked in raised silver and gold threads, blue floss silks in grand belle epoque style, the trained hem adorned with gold thread rouleaux and padded pom-poms, bust approx. 92cm, 36in
Kerry Taylor Auctions
Can I just take a moment to say oh my gosh?!
A Worth evening gown, circa 1913, labelled to the waist and numbered 56070, the black chiffon over-dress embroidered in white cotton with swags and trails, the trained pointed hem edged in velvet, the front skirt of ivory satin overlaid with chiffon, tasselled panels to the shoulders, velvet cummerbund, cuffs of silver lace, bust approx. 86cm, 34in
Kerry Taylor Auctions