As soon as I paid for my fabric and started waiting for it to arrive in the mail I realized "Oh crap! What the heck am I going to make with 10 yards of hot pink silk?!?!" I definitely hadn't thought that through before deciding to buy the fabric. (Late night fabric buying on Facebook is probably not recommended.) So I did what one does, and turned to Pinterest for inspiration. I looked through all of my historical clothing boards to see what, if any, hot pink gowns I had pinned. It took me surprisingly little time to find a gown I wanted to re-create.
This 1901 evening gown held at the Munich City Museum stood out to me almost immediately. Yes, it's pink silk and fur, which sounds rather garish when you describe it. Yet, when I look at it, it's beautiful and elegant and I want to wear it! Go figure. I suppose a beautiful gown is more than the sum of it's parts.
As soon as my hot pink silk arrived in the mail, I decided it was absolutely going to become that gown and I needed to find fur to trim it with. I briefly considered using fake fur, but it didn't take me long to decide real fur would be even better if I could get my hands on an old, unloved, fur coat to re-purpose. I went to my local antique mall and found just the thing - a lovely dark brown fur coat, which already had a few holes in it so I wouldn't feel bad disassembling it for my project.
In my stash, I already had some white silk chiffon left over from a recent project, which would be perfect for the sleeves! Add in some remnants of lace I've acquired over the years, which would work for the collar, and all my materials were set. Now I just needed an event to make this gown for.
The event appeared amazingly quickly as well. In April the Saint Louis Georgian Sewing Society has plans to go see Swan Lake in late Victorian and Edwardian attire. Thus, I have a deadline to finish the dress by!
Hot pink, fur-trimmed, silk Edwardian evening gown, here I come!