Rate the dress
comments 29

Rate the Dress: Emerald green in 1914

Last week I showed you an early 1870s dress in pink and white stripes, with butterfly patterned lace trim, and black bows.  While not everything about the dress tickled my fancy, I thought the half & half black and pink bows were a brilliant touch, but many of you did NOT agree.  In the same way, opinions differed greatly on whether the front to back skirt wrap was brilliant, or tablecloth-y.  In fact, the ratings were all over the range for the dress, bringing it in at a 7.4 out of 10.

This evening dress in deep green silk didn’t come with more of a date range than 1910-15, but the  fullness at the lower hips and tapering hem, paired with the skirt drapery, place it firmly in 1914, give or take a year.  The mix of textures is typical of the 1910s, giving complexity to an otherwise simple design.

What do you think?  

Rate the Dress on a Scale of 1 to 10

29 Comments

  1. For me this is a 10/10. The colours are great and I really like the simplicity of the design. I think it looses a bit of its charm on the dressform, I think in evening light on a real person it would look absolutely stunning.

  2. I have mixed feelings about this one. The early 1910s silhouette is graceful. But there’s something about the color scheme I find disturbing. The shiny emerald green with the black belt looks almost beetle-like to me, and not in a good way, and the white…lace is it?… on the bodice looks out of place. And I don’t see this one as looking lovely in evening light–I think any yellowish light would wash our the color. A 6 out of 10, I think.

  3. Etta says

    Hands down amazing! I love the colors and textures, and those little buttons are just divine. I would choose different jewelry- perhaps something in a gold tone to really set off the lovely green color, but absolutely stunning. Enough detail to be interesting without being overdone. 10/10!

  4. Etta says

    I also wish there were more pictures- I’m imagining a delicious draped back!

  5. Heart heart heart! Like like like! I love everything about it, except the modern necklace with it. What’s with that? Or maybe it does go? Anyway, that isn’t a function of the dress itself.
    I’m also not sure about the lace or sheer panel in front; the fading is throwing me off. I’m sure when it was a clean white it looked great. 9/10

  6. sewcharacteristicallyyou.comI agree that the color goes very well for a beetle. 🙂 It is a very striking color, that to me anyway, is too garish. Although, I see that others like it, and that is perfectly fine. In a different era with a different style, I might change my mind. Going past the color, I am not sure that I really like the style. I think I might be inclined to like it, if the bottom of the skirt wasn’t draped the way it is. 4/10

    Sarah
    http://www.sewcharacteristicallyyou.com/blog

    • Elise says

      I also like the beetle reference!

      On a dark-haired person, or a Woman of Color, such a dress would be very elegant. Some of the styling I dislike, but that may be the curator, not the dressmaker or owner.

      8

  7. Catherine says

    I’m not really a fan of the era – my instinctive reaction is to wish the overlay went all the way to the floor rather than ending at the hips – but this is a gorgeous color combination, and the mixture of textures and overall shape give it some definite interest. On the other hand, I can’t tell whether the white lace around the neckline is meant to look like that, or if it’s just been through the laundry way too many times, and there’s just too much going on up at the neck.

    5/10

  8. It’s lovely! I’m not generally a fan of that skirt shape, but I think it works here. The green is gorgeous, and the shiny overlay stuff and black belt go very well with it! The white bib thing looks a bit out of place, but when worn on an actual person with accessories I’m sure it would have looked less so.

    9/10

  9. The only thing I don’t care for is the white lace bodice bit. It looks somehow out-of-sync, probably because it’s such a stark contrast to the green (which I love, as well as the general gracefulness of the shape). I actually love the necklace.

    9 of 10

  10. Adding a modern necklace seems to be an Alexandre Vassiliev ‘thing’. I noticed several of them when I went to an exhibition of dresses from his collection some years ago.

    Also, the beaded part of the belt doesn’t necessarily belong with this dress. The same belt was displayed on a 1912 dress in the exhibition, but was not in the August Auctions listing which I later found for the 1912 dress.

    All that said, I do like the dress, so 8 / 10

  11. Gillian Stapleton says

    I’m not completely sold on the white panel at the front bodice, but the rest is a stunner. It reminds me of iridescent beetle wings, especially in combination with the lace overlay. 8/10.

  12. I love the shape and silhouette of the dress, but that’s about it… The choice of fabrics and embellishments seem like a witch disguised as a bug costume. Maybe it’s the shiny fabric, the spider web-like overlay or the out-of-place white insert. 4/10

  13. Amie says

    I love it! I am a pale redhead, and I would (and do!) wear this green and I get compliments.
    The belt is wonderful, like an obi belt from the 1970s (or was it 1980s?) I did not know it was also seen in this time period.
    I also like the sleeves, they appear dolman?
    I think the dress needs the contrast of the white up on the bodice.
    And I love love love the silhouette of this, it’s so feminine. The drape of fabric on the sides at the low hip.
    Can’t you just see a toe of a lady like boot peak out under the hem as this well dressed lady takes a step?
    10/10 for me.

  14. 10/10

    I repinned this from you because this is DAZZLING and GORGEOUS. I want it in my life so badly. I’ve been really loving the teens and 20s these days.

  15. Lynne says

    10 out of 10 – I love it!

    The colour! The wonderful drape of the skirt. The colour and texture of the sheer over-layer. Just beautiful. Simple, elegant, and perfect for its time.

    And it would suit you. I think you should make one. Go on.

  16. I love it. 9/10 I love its beetle like colour scheme, the fluid drapes and the proportions all feel right. I love the ecru lace front as I think if it were black it would be too exotic. I think I am still shuddering from the purple satin and black lace tulle dress in Love and Friendship!

  17. Rachel says

    I like the layers and shape, the blocky asymmetrical tunic over the folds of the hobble (?) skirt, but there are so many details that trip me up. The fabric of the tunic part is oddly dull next to the (very shiny) skirt. The skirt has that odd seam near the bottom. The pouchy areas on the hips might look good on a real person or might not – it’s hard to say. The buttons on the abdomen comes across as incongruously stiff, and then the white bib effect is just sort of there, by itself.

    But I love the belt. Great belt. And a really cool shape and concept behind the dress. It’s elegant and pulled together, yet still feels very relaxed. Despite my little nitpicks, I think the overall impression of this dress is very attractive.

    7/10

  18. Angela says

    It certainly isn’t demure! I can imagine it reading very well on stage or in film, paired with an ostentatious hat for a larger than life lady! 9/10

  19. Grace Darling says

    Lovely colour but looks like someone shinnied down the
    chimney and got covered in soot. The white bodice is too abrupt.
    Green is a colour usually associated with spring/new life…..this outfit is kinda
    depressing.

    4/10

  20. Johanne says

    I like it when reasons and taste in the Comments are all over the place. Returned and rethought my reaction to the photo of this ethereal dress at least five times — without the belt and necklace, it’s classic and beautifully so. It’s disheveled with time, but how interesting and glowing it must have been when brand new.

    10/10

    • Me too! It would be terribly boring if we all liked the same thing for the same reasons! Occasionally we do get something that we can all agree on, and that’s wonderful, because I think it would also be boring if we all disagreed all the time 😉

  21. I love this so much! Remove the lace, and I’d wear this (and feel absolutely stunning). I actually like the beetle appearance – but I am a gardener, and half an hour ago was talking about how much I love worms, so I might be biased. I’m going to go to 9.5, because that white thing in the front brings it down just a notch – but otherwise, I’m all for it!
    (I didn’t really expect to like it – that skirt shape isn’t quite my thing – but I can’t take off points for it, because turns out I love it anyway)

  22. ProfessorBats says

    Mid to late teens is not my favorite silhouette, but as my taste evolves, I may gain more appreciation for it. Either way, it’s an era of great creativity, and this is very nice example. I like the combination of colors and textures very much. I wish I could zoom in on that overlay net/lace/fabric. Is it beaded all over? Or metallic threads? Looks like some form shiny bits going on, which must have made it a stunner in movement in evening lights. As time typical as it is, the seam near the skirt hem detracts from the visual flow for me, but maybe it’s just part of me wishing for a sleeker 1910-ish silhouette (I know, I know – the above-the-hem seam was a thing already then, but at least it was typically to include a contrasting fabric). Overall, for its time, I think it’s a 9, whether it suits my personal taste or not.

    • ProfessorBats says

      Gah, I have to stop typing these off so fast, I always leave so may typos!

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