Deconstruction of a Party Outfit

OK, I promised to post the bits of my 50s party outfit for tonight’s staff Christmas do.

First the dress. I found this at the Sally Ann for five bucks! It’s not true vintage…the fabric is far too fresh. But it was made by someone who knows their way around a sewing maching, using a vintage pattern. They kept it authentic too…using a metal side zipper and ‘rope’ belt loops (unfortunately there was no belt with the dress and I couldn’t find one that was just right, but I think it looks fine without a belt too).

Next the crinoline. This is the only thing I bought that was new. Got it at a local shop that caters to dancers.

I needed a wrap. I looked and looked for something suitable in the local second hand shops, and the closest I came was a black wool shawl with rabbit fur pompoms. It had ugly lace trim, but that was easily remedied. After removing the trim I also cut it so it had more rounded lines. I think it works.

Now I needed some bling. The earrings were a Christmas present from Iris years ago; the rest came from second hand shops or ebay.

The purse was easy…my beaded Kelly bag I’ve had for years.

I waffled about the shoes. The ones I finally chose I’ve had for a long time, so they are comfortable enough for a night of dancing. They also have just a touch of bling.

The piece de resistance was going to be a little cocktail hat I ordered from Etsy, but sadly it hasn’t arrived yet. Here’s the Etsy photo:

Putting this all together felt like doing a jigsaw puzzle. It was great fun. There are still a few things I’d like to add to really complete this…a little pair of black cotton short gloves, and a belt. But that will come.

I’ll try to post a photo of the finished product in a couple of hours, once I’m dressed.


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