A) COLLECTION: Comédie-Française
DESCRIPTIF COSTUME: Pourpoint en soie gris perle. Applications de dentelle argent, paillettes, pierres. Culotte en soie parme avec résille argent. Rhingrave en soie gris perle, dentelle argent.
DESCRIPTIF COSTUME: Pourpoint en soie jaune pâle, applications de dentelle or, et paillettes. Culotte bouffante en soie jaune pâle couverte de résille or. Canons dentelle. Rhingrave en soie jaune pâle. Rubans or, blanc, jaune. Galons et paillettes or.
Costume fantastique de style médiéval. Robe longue avec bustier en faille marron, garni de plumes et feuilles en tulle vert; manches ornées de lierre et de fleurs roses. Jupe en soie peinte rose et verte recouverte de tulle vert avec panneaux en soie peints à motifs végétaux garnis de cabochons irisés. Paire de gants à crispin en soie verte et marron garnie de plumes verte.
Robe à taille haute en velours de soie rouge avec traîne, manches larges resserrées sur l’avant-bras avec engageantes en velours rouge à motifs rasés. Application de motifs en latex or et noir sur le corsage et les épaules. Col bijou en latex doré. Jupon en faille fushia.
Tutu long. Bustier en satin de soie rose pâle avec décolleté découpé et armaturé, garni de paillettes irisées et de galon écru et irisé. Tutu composé de tulle blanc et bleu et de crin, garni de galons blancs, irisés, et de cordelette blanche.
NMAH Smithsonian: This wedding dress was made from a nylon parachute that saved the groom’s life during World War II. Maj. Claude Hensinger, a B-29 pilot, and his crew, were returning from a bombing raid over Yowata, Japan, in August 1944 when their engine caught fire. The crew was forced to bail out. It was night and Major Hensinger landed on some rocks and suffered some minor injuries. During the night he used the parachute both as a pillow and a blanket. In the morning the crew was able to reassemble and were taken in by some friendly Chinese. He kept the parachute and used it as a way to propose to Ruth in 1947. He presented it to her and suggested she make a gown out of it for their wedding.
She wondered how she was going to make “this voluminuous item” into a dress. Seeing a dress in a store window that was based on one that appeared in the movie Gone with the Wind, she patterned her dress after that. She hired a local seamstress, Hilda Buck, to make the bodice and veil. She made the skirt herself; she pulled up the strings on the parachute so that the dress would be shorter in the front and have a train in the back. The couple were married in the Neffs Lutheran Church in Neffs, Pennslyvania, July 19, 1947. Their daughter and their son’s bride also wore the dress for their weddings.
I have to admit that when I started writing this post my intention was not to come off as a giant costume snob because I’m definitely not like that. I have a sewing machine and I’m not afraid to use it. I understand budgets and I understand fabric so I’m not trying to insult anyone.
What I don’t understand is inaccurate information when the source is readily available. I’m starting to become more than a little frustrated with Pinterest and at the risk of reiterating what Samantha has already said, I think it needs to be said again.
I study costuming, I have my BA in it because it’s what I love. But nothing gets me more riled up that the perpetuation of false information in regards to movie costumes being labelled as original costumes (Christine’s Pink Bustle from Phantom of the Opera I am talking about you) and really obvious dates that are wrong. I understand that it’s a bit hypocritical since a few of my first posts three years ago make me hide my face in shame. I do slip up every now and then but I try to correct that mistake quickly or I address it.
Which leads me to an example, this dress has been plastered all over Tumblr, Facebook, and Pinterest as a gown from 1800-1820. Those women would be rolling over in their graves if they ever found out that this hot mess of a dress was attributed to their period of fashion.
I can vaguely, maybe, if I bash my head against the keyboard and squint my eyes see why someone could confuse this with a Regency gown. Yes, the bodice stops under the bust, and the skirt is vaguely in the shape of a Regency dress but just because something shares a silhouette with a time period doesn’t mean it’s correct. Especially when the pin has a link straight to the museum which dates the gown to 1967.
All I would like to say is please check your sources. Samantha offers really good advice when she says to look for 3 primary sources (link) when you find the costume you want to make. Don’t just take the comment that comes with a pin as the final word, click through and read the source. If there isn’t a link go to Google images and search using the image.
The best piece of advice I can give anyone is don’t be afraid to ask if you don’t know. I don’t think they teach that in schools anymore but when I was growing up my parents and my teachers all taught that there was no shame in asking for help if you don’t know the answer. If I’m unsure I post and ask. Nine times out of Ten someone has the answer within five minutes of me posting.
I’m not trying to crucify Pinterest because I hardcore love it. All I’m asking is, people check your sources. There is way too much false information floating around. Make sure you aren’t contributing to that.
I’m going to go ahead and turn questions on, I’m awful as answering my ask box because I never get notifications anymore but I’ll really keep my eye on it the next few days.
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Materials: nylon, silk, glass, metallic thread, plastic
Edit: First request for clarification just came in. The point of this post is to address the circulation of false information when the source is readily available. I understand it’s not something that can be stopped especially by one person. The point is to raise awareness that it is going on so the next time you see an image accompanied by text you don’t take it as *the* correct answer. It may be the right information, that’s awesome! But it may turn out this dress and be so wrong it hurts.