Sunday, July 21, 2013

Silver Screen Movie Costume?

From the seller:

This vintage Wild West dance hall saloon girl gold and red trim black velvet dress costume dates from 1900. It is made of a black velvet fabric, with gold thread raised soutache work flowers, lattice work with red faceted glass trim and a red pleated cotton petticoat skirt bottom. This gorgeous dance hall saloon girl can can costume is a long floor length, with plunging necklines, shoulder straps, cut out strap short sleeves, large hook closures on the back, with a full layered skirt and is fully lined with stays boning, bust enhancer's sewn inside the bodice. The dress is quite heavy weighing over 5 pounds and measures 53 inches long, with 36 inch hips, a 24 inch waist and 38 inch bust. It is in as-is fair condition, with frayed repaired shoulder straps, stained frayed red pleated skirt hem, missing some red glass stones and hook closures on back. This is still a wonderful amazing piece of wearable Western textile art!

From Me:

I have no idea where the seller got "dance hall saloon girl" from or the date 1900. This is early and it is a costume - but I think it's either fancy dress or possibly an early movie costume. To my eye, it looks vaguely in keeping with the cuts known in the 1930's. The hooks and eyes up the back would make sense for then as well as zippers were only starting to come into a use with fashion at that point. The large beads on the netting look newer than 1900 as well. I'm putting this in the 1930's for now. (And yes, I *might* start adding some real 1930's outfits soon if you would like. Just ask)


  1. OMG! this is a dress I could wear! So amazing!

  2. I know this can be a slippery thing, but the style of the embellishment on it says 1930's-early 1940's much more than 1900's, to me, too. The petals on the flowers are very much like the appliqu├ęd and embroidered bows that one sees a lot on 1940's jackets.