Last week’s Rate the Dress featured bright pink silk velvet and gold lace. This week’s features humble furnishing cotton with wool embroidery made into a very posh dress – will faux simplicity fare better than brash finery?
If we counted Instagram & Facebook reactions last week’s dress would easily be a 9.9 out of 10 – there was SO MUCH LOVE. However, I do not, because I can’t go back and find them later (and because it’s too much work – and I do have to actually work), so only the ratings here on the blog count. And they were decidedly more mixed, with some loves, and a few real NOPES.
So the official rating is…
The Total: 7.5 out of 10
This week: a 1770s crewel embroidered Robe a la Francaise
This striking Robe a la Francaise made such a stir on the internet when Cora Ginsburg’s 2018 catalogue came out that I thought it was unfair to show it as a Rate the Dress option immediately. But it’s been a few months, and cypress motifs in art and textiles have come up three different times for me this week so it’s clearly a message that it’s time to rate it:
Rather than the typical brocaded or flat silks, or printed cotton, this ca 1770 française is made from a midweight cotton embellished with cypress trees worked in wool crewel embroidery.
Ginsburgh’s catalogue suggests that the fabric was intended as a furnishing material, and that the dressmaker or wearer made the unusual decision to use it as dress fabric instead.
The heavy cotton of the dress is balanced by the embroidered net lace trim, its delicacy providing a counterpoint to the bold cypress motifs.