Printed silk voile, embroidered with sequins and beads, and trimmed with lace
Museum no. T.74-1974
Given by Lady Victoria Wemyss
Superb materials and top-quality workmanship combine to create this stunning evening dress. Light-reflecting beads and sequins had long been popular decoration for evening fabrics, but in the 1920s the fashion reached its peak. The embroidery follows the lines of the printed floral design to enhance the pattern and catch the light. This dress was designed by the fashion house Callot Soeurs. Four sisters, Marie, Marthe, Regina and Joséphine, had opened a lace shop in 1888. The eldest, Marie (Madame Gerber), developed the couture side of the business at 9 avenue Matignon, Paris, where it continued until the mid 1930s. The sisters worked with exquisite and unusual materials, including Chinese silks and rubberised gabardine. Callot Soeurs was also known for its use of lace and decorated sheer fabrics.