All posts filed under: Rate the dress

Day dress and cape of shot silk, early 1850s, The John Bright Historic Costume Collection

Rate the Dress: Purple, purple, and more purple, 1850s

When we bought our lovely little cottage four years ago, the master bedroom was painted purple floor to ceiling. It was awful*. When I saw today’s Rate the Dress it instantly reminded me of our previously-purple bedroom: not because it is necessarily awful, even really the same colour, but because it is a lot of purple, and because friends said of our bedroom “that colour might be really nice in something else, but not as a bedroom.”** Last week: a 1920s day dress in printed silk It was very easy to tell what people would give as a rating for last week’s dress, depending on what words you used for it. Those who found it ‘subtle’ or ‘delicate’ or ‘refined’ rated it above an 8, those who felt it was ‘blah’ or ‘washed out’ or a ‘sack’ gave it significantly less. side note: Catherine says it was a rice cake: healthful but not appealing. I happen to adore rice cakes. And a whole host of other very delicately flavoured foods with dry crunchy textures. My …

Woman's Dress Ensemble, United States, circa 1870, Silk taffeta, linen plain weave, and cotton twill weave with silk macramé fringe, LACMA, M.2007.211.773a-d

Rate the Dress: Raspberry pink 1870s with two types of fringe

After all the excitement of the festive fancy frock-a-thon, it was hard to pick an ensemble that wouldn’t seem like a letdown for this week’s Rate the Dress.  Hopefully this week’s pick is interesting enough to pique your interest, even if it isn’t a glittering evening gown. Last week: a sparkly, pleated, bow-bedecked 1920s frock Last week’s 1920s dress didn’t receive quite the enthusiastic reception that heralded the House of Worth frock of the week before – at least in the number of commenters.  Those that did rate it, however, quite liked it (except the bow), and so it received exactly the same rating! The Total: 9.3 out of 10 I was very surprised by how many people didn’t like the bow (and didn’t realise that it was exactly the same fabric as the bodice – it just appears different because you’re seeing many layers of it).  Rachel’s comment sums up exactly how I feel about the bow and the dress.  Without it, I thought the dress would actually have been very boring and ordinary. …

Evening Dress, Yteb, silk, sequins & metallic thread, 1926, The Philadelphia Museum of Art

Rate the Dress: pleats, bows & lots of sparkles

I started the Rate the Dress party-frock-a-thon with an orange dress, and it felt right to finish it up with the same colour.  It’s not usually a favourite colour, but the first one was a smashing success.  Can this week’s pick rival it? Last week: a House of Worth Robe à transformation in red velvet Red velvet was always going to be pretty popular, and the ratings and comments did not disappoint.  There was a veritable sea of “ooooh” and swooning (and two outlying ‘nopes’). There was a bit of a divide in those who preferred the draped bodice, and thought the evening bodice looked like a forced exercise in using the lace, and those who thought the day bodice was unrelieved or contrived, and the evening bodice incredibly clever and spectacular. I’m one who didn’t love the evening bodice at first glance, but the more I looked at it up close, the more it grew on me.  There were some incredibly clever features that were really struggling to show in the photos.  I think it would have …