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Inaugaral Gowns

In Style today is running a bit of a flashback on what first ladies have worn for their husbands inaugurations. I thought I would show you some of the more "vintage ones" to keep in theory with what I do. I am also skipping the ones I think are atrocious, you can go over to the site yourself and "ewwww" in your head there - here we are just going to focus on the top three most fabulous ones.

Number Three
Nancy Reagan wears this one shoulder gown from the great James Galanos.
(Galanos is the featured designer of the week at Shrimpton Couture so if you want to learn more about him go to the site and click on the link on the front page)
The gown was comepletely handbeaded and cost $22,500 in 1981!

Number Two
In 1961 Jaqueline Kennedy collaborates with the in-house designer at Bergdorf Goodmans(Ethel Frankau) to create her dress. I find this fascinating that she took that kind of risk for such a public venue. It really is a testimate to her sense of style. And it neatly solved the problem of not playing favorites amonst the designers of the time AND it gave her the opportunity to completely control the siutation - something I am guessing she was very very good at.

She was also very good at being entirely classic whilst still adding just a touch of (appropriate) sexiness to remind you she was still a young woman.

I think this is why Michelle Obama is often compared to Jackie, she does this well too. Wouldn't it be coincidental if she goes the "collaborative effort route" with a somewhat unknown name too? If she does, remember where you read that guess first!

And finally The Number One Gown
I am just a sucker for really well done gowns from the fifties and this one from Nettie Rosenstein, worn by Mamie Eisenhower in 1953 is To Die. It was also PINK and cause quite a sensation in its day becasue it was that color. Add that it was cut with a plunge and was dripping with rhinestones!

(2,000 of them in fact, all hand sewn into place)

So you have a bombshell pink silk gown, covered in rhinestones, cut to perfection and finsihed with matching gloves and a pearl encrusted clutch. It just does not get better then that!

I love that she took such a fashion risk and defied the conservative mode of the day and went for the equivalant of modern red carpet bling!

Think of the wit, the bravery, the defiance, the sheer joy of feeling like a million dollars that day on what was probably the most spectacular dress she had ever worn!

That ladies and gents is why I love vintage.
You get spectacular dresses and all that left over fabulousness from its previous owners.
How can you possibly go wrong with that?


Alice said...

Very nice post. Those dresses are gorgeous.


alexandra said...

great post! xx

Run's House said...

That Nettie Rosenstein gown word by Mrs. Eisenhower is to die for! It looks very lively even in a black and white picture, what more if it's colored in pink! sigh...

suzanne antique lover said...

Great post.. love the dresses... reminds of a vintage look.!

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