Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Many of our mothers wore them. They were comfortable. They were washable. They were utilitarian and feminine at the same time. Well, that was the 1950s when more women wore dresses than jeans and a tee. Personally, I think skirts and dresses are much more comfortable than pants, so I designed this dress as an homage to comfort and style.
The original garment was a 1940s floor length dressing gown with two skinny ties at the waist and a few errant snaps down the front. Definitely a step up from a housedress. It was given to me by a friend with the story that it had been her mother's and she remembered putting it on in her absence and parading around the house and then she paused and I wasn't sure whether it had been a good memory. She didn't have the happiest of childhoods and, she didn't say this, but my guess was that she had mixed feelings (at best) about the garment. I hugged her and thanked her, then hung it the garment rack for future use.
After I worked on my inspiration board last week I pulled several color stories off the rack and maroon and chartreuse was one. I inspected the gown for major flaws and found none. Then I tried it on and immediately loved the feel of the cold rayon on my skin. I thought it would make a nice little casual dress. I modernized it with a full length exposed zipper down the front then aged it with vintage rhinestone buttons. The self tie around the waist was the final addition.
I sense a soft and comforting ambience in this piece that makes me appreciate the possibilities in transformation.