Evening Dress with One Shoe

Brief Item Record

Title: Evening Dress with One Shoe

Creator: Russell & Allen

Date: 1892 (circa)

Description: Evening ensemble of ivory silk satin with gold and pink floral metallic brocade. Bodice: fitted princess-seam bodice with modified puff sleeves with gathers at the underarm and longer at the bottom of the sleeve than the top, and square neckline. Pink silk ribbon lacing closure at center front with hand-stitched thread eyelets; metal boning; metal hooks and eyes; pink synthetic lining; pink silk lining; white cotton grosgrain ribbon waistband; six-piece paneled back with slightly curved boat-neckline at back. 7 pieces of metal boning in back interior and interior grosgrain ribbon waist tape with hook and eye closures at front; two hooks at center back of waist tape (to connect to skirt). Synthetic additions at center interior front and hem of sleeves. Skirt: 6 gored panels and 3 godets; starched pink cotton lining; pink silk lining; natural cotton lining; tan grosgrain ribbon; back fullness and room for pad; longer in back; pink piping around waistband under grosgrain ribbon; one pocket on right hip; cream silk ruched trim at hem and one 2.5 inches up from hem . One matching shoe: brocade and leather; gold (leaf?); natural canvas; brass nails; pressed wood ; two pieces of brocade on exterior; double bow at toe cleavage; pointed toe; Louis heel shape; 9 nails into heel .

Full Item Record

Dublin Core

Identifier

VC1992003

Title

Evening Dress with One Shoe

Alternative Title

Brocade Ball gown

Description

Evening ensemble of ivory silk satin with gold and pink floral metallic brocade. Bodice: fitted princess-seam bodice with modified puff sleeves with gathers at the underarm and longer at the bottom of the sleeve than the top, and square neckline. Pink silk ribbon lacing closure at center front with hand-stitched thread eyelets; metal boning; metal hooks and eyes; pink synthetic lining; pink silk lining; white cotton grosgrain ribbon waistband; six-piece paneled back with slightly curved boat-neckline at back. 7 pieces of metal boning in back interior and interior grosgrain ribbon waist tape with hook and eye closures at front; two hooks at center back of waist tape (to connect to skirt). Synthetic additions at center interior front and hem of sleeves. Skirt: 6 gored panels and 3 godets; starched pink cotton lining; pink silk lining; natural cotton lining; tan grosgrain ribbon; back fullness and room for pad; longer in back; pink piping around waistband under grosgrain ribbon; one pocket on right hip; cream silk ruched trim at hem and one 2.5 inches up from hem . One matching shoe: brocade and leather; gold (leaf?); natural canvas; brass nails; pressed wood ; two pieces of brocade on exterior; double bow at toe cleavage; pointed toe; Louis heel shape; 9 nails into heel .

Creator

Date

1892 (circa)

Subject

Clothing and dress

Extent

40 inches (chest), 26 inches (waist), 41.75 inches (center front length), 74.5 inches (center back length), other measurements: Bodice:chest = 40; waist = 26; center back length = 12.5;



Skirt:center back length = 62(from bottom of waistband) ; skirt center front length = 41.75(from bottom of waistband); waist = 28; circumference at hem = 187.25



Ensemble: center back length = 74.5;



shoe: around a size 6N?;heel height=1.5 to 2 ; heel toe to heel= 9.25

Type

Physical Object

Spatial Coverage

Temporal Coverage

Rights

Rights Holder

© Vassar College Costume Collection. Images in this collection may be used for teaching, classroom presentation, and research purposes only. For other reuse, reproduction and publication of these images, contact costumeshop@vassar.edu.

Costume Item Type Metadata

Cataloguer with Date

Sharon Scoble

Sierra Starr

Margaret

3/24/10

Color Main

Neckline

Sleeve Type

Waistline

Skirt Type

Chest

40

Waist

26

Center Front Length

41.75

Center Back Length

74.5

Measurements Other

Bodice:chest = 40; waist = 26; center back length = 12.5;



Skirt:center back length = 62(from bottom of waistband) ; skirt center front length = 41.75(from bottom of waistband); waist = 28; circumference at hem = 187.25



Ensemble: center back length = 74.5;



shoe: around a size 6N?;heel height=1.5 to 2 ; heel toe to heel= 9.25

All Measurements

40 inches (chest), 26 inches (waist), 41.75 inches (center front length), 74.5 inches (center back length), other measurements: Bodice:chest = 40; waist = 26; center back length = 12.5;



Skirt:center back length = 62(from bottom of waistband) ; skirt center front length = 41.75(from bottom of waistband); waist = 28; circumference at hem = 187.25



Ensemble: center back length = 74.5;



shoe: around a size 6N?;heel height=1.5 to 2 ; heel toe to heel= 9.25

Label

Robes de Bal / Russell & Allen / Old Bond Street LONDON 'printed on inner waistband, 'Mrs. Crosby' handwritten on small hand sewn tag.

References

'Mrs. Crosby'label tape, character name?

Date Earliest

1887

Date Latest

1897

Culture

Gender

Classification

costume
clothing

Function

Condition Description

a. rip in fabric of bodice top right front , interior silk lining of bodice shattered . original silk lining possibly entirely gone, leaving pink cotton lining unfinished interlining; brocade panel stolen from inside of skirt used as center front panel on bodice; pink synthetic additions to interior of bodice .

b. 2nd row of trim around hem partially detatched, fabric of skirt coming apart from waistband , natural linen original reinforcement for train safety-pinned to interior .

c. silk of shoe worn on the back of heel and left side d.

Mannequin

Jul-68

Storage Location

K7

Exhibition Notes

This gown consists of a fitted, boned bodice and a full gored skirt with back pleating and train, all made from an ivory silk satin with an ornate, seventeenth century-inspired gold and pink floral metallic brocade. It was made by Russell & Allen, well known English couturiers known for their court dress. It likely included ornate embellishments that were removed at some point during alterations for the stage, and would have been worn by a wealthy woman in the 1890s who could afford handmade, fashionable garments.
In 1894 Harpers's Bazaar wrote that 'satin to match the gown is still considered the proper footwear for evening,' so this shoe conforms to the correct standard of contemporary high society evening wear. This article implies that these shoes could only be worn with this dress, and that any other dress the wearer might have owned should have had its corresponding set of matching shoes. This practice would only have been sustainable by the very wealthy, identifying the owner of this dress as a member of the upper class who possessed the luxury to follow the latest fashion trends.
What are the social implications of wearing a shoe such as this? Actually, standing in and dancing on this shoe during a social function. Certainly, it functions of an indicator of status; A golden heel would have literally supported the wearer as she milled about a party. Both the bodice and skirt required a great deal of work; in fact, this work is ongoing. While the bodice has been successfully reinforced, the skirt is a victim of its own weight. Despite significant reinforcement of the fabric at the waistband and re-pleating of the skirt, it continues to tear just below wherever it is reinforced. This is likely due to the deterioration of the silk threads over decades of contact with their neighboring copper threads in the brocade. Researched and Stabilized by Sharon Scoble ‘10 and Sierra Starr ‘12

Work Type

Pattern

Citation

Russell & Allen, “Evening Dress with One Shoe,” Vassar College Costume Collection, accessed October 20, 2021, http://vccc.vassarspaces.net/items/show/675.

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