Monday, May 6, 2019

A touch of Hollywood stitching

 A couple of weekends ago, Hubby and I braved the cold and rain to drive to a local outlet mall an hour away from our home. We really didn't need to do any shopping, (though I did find a dress to wear to my daughter's shower and a nice top for work or date night). 
I wanted to see the following exhibit of costumes and clothing from.....
This unusual costume was worn by Doris Day in "Glass Bottom Boat" in 1966.
This was worn by Debbie Reynolds in "The Unsinkable Molly Brown". Look how tiny that waist is! 
Below is a dress from the 1920's that belonged to Clara Bow. It looks very fragile, but is still quite pretty.
This beautifully embroidered dress was worn and owned by Joan Crawford in the 1940's
 Judy Garland wore this outfit in the movie "Babes on Broadway" in the 1940's. Again, look at how small the waist is.
 Ginger Rodgers and Fred Astaire wore the outfits below in different movies. The brown dress has pretty detailing.
 This red dress was a personal gown of Elizabeth Taylor from the 1970's designed by Halston. What a timeless look.
 Tallulah Bankhead wore this over-the-top costume as Catherine the Great in "A Royal Scandal" in 1945. It is sad to see that the velvet is no longer in good shape in places.
 Even more over-the-top is the costume for "Marie Antionette" from 1938. The actress who wore it was Norma Shearer.
 Joan Fontaine wore this beautiful gold creation in "Frenchman's Creek" in 1944. Zoom in to see the amazing swirls in the gold fabric.
Isn't this black creation stunning? It was worn by Rita Hayworth in "Strawberry Blonde". 
 This gold gown is a reproduction of one worn by Grace Kelly in "To Catch a Thief". Edith Head had to design the neckline to showcase the jewels.
The skimpy creation below was worn by Lana Turner in "The Prodigal". The fringe is totally beaded. 
 This dress was worn by Mira Sorvino portraying Marilyn Monroe. The elaborate duo to the right are from the movie "The Slipper and the Rose: A Story of Cinderella" from 1976 with Richard Chamberlain.
 Do you recognize this outfit? It is the school-girl clothes of "Gigi"! Oh how much fun to see this outfit worn by Leslie Caron in 1958. Again, can you believe that small waist.
 The gown below is from the same movie. I love the music from that movie. My mom had the album and it was played often when I was a little girl.
 This gorgeous gown was worn by Mae West in "Every Day's a Holiday" in 1937.
 Who can forget Clark Gable in "Gone With the Wind".
 Do you remember the "curtain dress" from that same movie. This was worn by  Vivian Leigh in 1939. Trust me that she was a small lady. This gown goes to the ground and I could see over the top. I am only 5'2" tall myself.
 Ava Gardner was even smaller when she wore this beautiful dress in "The Great Sinner" in 1949. I felt like a giant near it. I don't think my thigh would fit in that waist. 
This is a beautifully embroidered dress that was worn by Jeanette McDonald in the 1942 movie "I Married an Angel".
 Below is a bathing suit worn by Esther Williams in "Easy to Love" in 1953. Do you see the tease behind it?
Here it is! This is one of the outfits worn by Audrey Hepburn as Eliza Doolittle in "My Fair Lady". Another movie whose music brings back childhood memories. I love this movie. It is amazing to see the intricate detailing on this dress. Zoom in.
There were a few other outfits that I didn't photograph. Although I recognized almost all of the actors/actresses, I wasn't familiar with all of the movies. It was a small exhibit, but so much fun.

Hubby kept commenting about how much larger people are now. Somehow I think that is partially true, but that even current female actors still strive to be very small. I also know that sizing of garments has changed radically since I was younger, which is why my daughter often wears a 0 or 00, when she looks like at 2 or 4 to me. I don't think I was ever as small as she is, but I weighed about the same and usually wore 6 when I was her age. Never the less, I was so glad that we were able to get to see this exhibit. I hope you enjoyed the pictures.

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Thanks for sharing these amazing gowns! Do you know if these costumes were part of Debbie Reynold's collection?
    She had a museum at one time.

  2. So enjoyed the photos of the beautiful outfits .
    They were so elegant .
    It took me back in time all those great films that many of the garments were from , thank you.

  3. I think they keep changing sizes now - to trick people into thinking they are smaller? The waist lines on those dresses sure are small and I didn't think in the 40's that they wore corsets -- people are bigger now though I was a 5 or 6 back when I was 18 and now that would be a 0!

  4. I loved the pictures. Thanks for sharing them. I am so glad that they are preserving such beautiful garments.

  5. Cathie: Wow I am an old movie freak, this is an amazing display of clothing, you are so lucky to have been able to visit this exhibit.


  6. When we went to see the David Bowie exhibit in Brooklyn they had all of his costumes for all of the videos. It was awesome! So I think I would equally like this display :)

  7. Awesome show!! Thanks so much for sharing it! I loved seeing the beautiful gowns, and that Gone With the Wind curtain dress is a classic!

  8. An amazing collection... how wonderful to be able to see it in person!

  9. How wonderful to see this exhibition with such amazing gowns! Many thanks for sharing with us all.

  10. Oh the memories that have come back scrolling through your photos of these gorgeous creations. I love, love, love watching the movies from the golden years of Hollywood. How I would love to wander and drink in the gorgeousness of all these dresses. A fabulous exhibition. As to the tiny waists, I am thinking perhaps they wore corsets pulled in to an inch of their lives. =) Thank you for sharing this most amazing collection.

  11. Thank you for sharing your visit to this beautiful exhibition - I thoroughly enjoyed stepping briefly into Hollywood:-)


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