Imagine how thrilled I was to find a beautiful dress-up vintage dress in a local thrift store, for only $4! And even more thrilled when it actually fit me!
It needed a good cleaning and a little mending in the underarm seams, so I did that and then put it away to save it for our church's Christmas party, when I would actually have a chance to wear a semi-formal outfit.
The top of the dress is a black crepe with a lot of stretch; the skirt is ever so wide and made of crisp, tiny-pleated taffeta. A band of the taffeta is at the neckline, but otherwise it is unadorned. I love the very feel of the fabric. A perfect 1950s cocktail dress that has a lot of accessorizing possibilities.
And it's handmade, too! I like to think of the seamstress who made it, and all the care she put into it, and wonder what event she made it for. Was it a happy dress?
The waistline wasn't quite at the right place, but that I fixed by wearing a wide belt.
For the party, I paired the dress with a chunky 1950s necklace and earrings, velvet-cuffed gloves, heels from the late '40s-early '50s, and to take it from just a formal dress to a Christmas party dress, a vintage holiday corsage that has seen better days but is still pretty and festive. It's probably from the 1940s and quite fragile.
Also a vintage pagoda umbrella gleaned at Burning Bridges antique mall before we moved to Idaho.
I dressed early to take these pictures, and since we had just had a fresh fall of snow, found the pine trees a perfect backdrop! As long as I had a path shoveled, that is. 10 inches of snow and vintage heels don't go together too well. :-)
It's a little shorter skirt than I usually wear, but since it is so wide, when I sit down it comes down over my knees quite a bit. The non-vintage black crinoline I wore under it was just the right length and poof.
It closes with two metal zippers, and because of the wide skirt and stretchy bodice, is probably one of the easiest vintage garments or reproductions I've tried to actually get over my head and shoulders.
I have so few actual vintage garments that I was just tickled to find this one. That's why I keep going to thrift stores! You never know what you'll find, and sometimes it's very much worth finding.
I hope to show you next week the outfit I made to wear Christmas Day, but I also just love having the work already done for me with a treasure like this dress. I got a lot of compliments on it at the party. I only wish I had an excuse to dress up more often!