Last week’s rate the dress was a probably-by Callot Soeurs gown in what-do-we-call-this-bronze-blush-champagne with intricate embroidery. A few people weren’t so enthusiastic, but most of you loved the dress – so much so it’s going to get a bit polygamous, because a number of us are in line to marry it. (me too!). The final rating was 9.3 out of 10.
I’m currently obsessing over paisley, because I’m giving a talk on Paisley at CoCo, so this week’s Rate the Dress is on-theme. In fact, it manages to combine paisley with another one of my obsessions: tea gowns.
This tea gown is an example of a mid-century paisley shawl which has been re-made into a fitted garment. This practice was very common from the late 1870s onwards, as shawls fell out of fashion as bustles came in, but the actual shawl fabric was still valued.
Though paisley shawls of the 1860s were ENORMOUS, they still don’t contain enough fabric to make a full trained tea gown, so the dressmaker has combined the wool shawl with muted lavender taffeta, which forms the front of the gown, and an inset train.
The lavender front of the gown features gathered smocking at the waist and neck, in a nod to the Aesthetic fashions which were so often associated with tea gowns.
So, how does this rate as an example of paisley, re-use and a tea gown? Does it manage to combine elegance and comfort? And how do you feel about the match of the lavender and the warmer tones in the shawl?
Rate the Dress on a Scale of 1 to 10