Dear Friend,

Last year, when I found this late 1950’s dead stock dress on etsy, it was love at first sight.

I have only just started wearing it recently as I had to completely detach the waistband and shorten the bodice by 1 inch- I’m quite short waisted. This was quite a bit more time consuming than I thought…but now it’s finished I’m so glad I persevered.

I really would like to find a small cocktail hat to wear with it, but I am stumped as to what colour it should be…I’m not mad about the black shoes with the dress, so I’m waiting for inspiration.

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(The colour didn’t come out so well in these first few photos. It’s a very vibrant colour, and is more like the photos with the fabric tag.)

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…I’m not sure what I loved the most, the satin bow, the rhinestone buckle or those fabulous pockets.

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It doesn’t have any lining but I have a very pretty lace slip in the same colour that matches beautifully

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 The cut of the skirt is very flattering and looks it’s best when walking- it accentuates all the right places and manages to make even little old me look like I have long-ish legs.

It came with it’s original tag still attached stating it’s made with Celanese fabric  ‘The Beauty Fibre’

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I have had a lonooonnnggg love affair with 1950’s over sized pocket dresses and this is my first foray into the style.

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 The 1950’s models wearing them in ads and on the pattern packets always look so haughty and confident- I’m sure that those pockets instilled them with this confidence.

I believe them to be what shoulder pads were to 1940’s gals-power clothes- very demure and yet strong and bold, feminine without looking girly. So different to all the fluff and frill of 1950’s fashion. These pockets were found on fitted, upmarket wiggle dresses and suits.

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Celanese fabric was considered a marvel of modern technology in the 50’s and 60’s.

It provided a glamorous, versatile fabric that could be spun into many different textures and looks. It filled a niche in the clothing market of the time. With the emergence of middle classes and women who wanted ‘evening wear’ at a  reasonable price. These man-made fibres provided high quality fabric that looked luxurious and wore well for a fraction of the cost of silk.

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I find it crushes a little when sitting but the creases drop out quite quickly, it moves well and makes a fabulous swishy noise when wearing….halfway between a taffeta and a stiff silk.

I have to say that the fabric isn’t wearing as well as I thought it would (there are a few thread coming loose from the embroidery) but on the whole I do agree that it is ‘beauty fibre’.

xx

Shauna