Wednesday, July 23, 2014

1940s Novelty "Fan" Print Dress

Hello again everyone! My goodness, the last few weeks have been so crazy busy. As I mention recently Cori and I have started house hunting. Because clearly we don't have enough going on in our lives right now! Ha! We can't wait to get our own place! We've been making progress with the wedding plans as well and getting a lot of last minute things finalized. It's incredibly stressful right now and kind of exciting too. We visited another house this past weekend. I say house but really it was a castle. :) OK, so really it was an on location auction preview for a house built to look like a small castle. No kidding, but more on that later. I took lots of pictures! :)

Anyway, I thought I would show you something far more interesting today then etsy updates and sale news. I posted a few pictures of this dress on Facebook but it's time for a proper blog post. This is the dress I wore for the third day of the MAAM WWII airshow that Cori and I went to back in June. You can see my first two outfit posts on it here and here. None of the photos in this post are mine so I kindly ask that you do not copy them without permission. Photo credits go to Voon Chew and Neal Howland.

Photo by Neal Howland
This dress was an ebay purchase. I have mixed feelings about shopping there. Sometimes there are good deals to be had but I find that most people who sell vintage don't really know what they are listing and don't take very good pictures. It's also really annoying to have someone outbid you at the last minute. I've had that happen several times. Oh well. After a good long soak this dress was ready to wear. (You should have seen the color of the water after the first wash, ewwww!) I wasn't sure at first if I like the way it looked on me because it was so different from anything I normally wear. I don't often go for crazy prints but it's really grown on me. :) I paired the dress with the same blue felt hat and shoes seen in this post. I have a darker blue hat that would look good too but I received so many compliments on this one that I think I'll wear it again with the dress in the future.

One of the fun things about the MAAM event is the variety of historic displays. So many opportunities for fun photos. Cori and I joined Neal at the home front display for a little photo shoot. Inside one of the hangers visitors could walk through and experience what life was like at home during WWII. The display included a full living room, bed room, dinning room, kitchen and bath. The food of course was fake. :)

Photo by Neal Howland
Photo by Neal Howland
 The bedroom set up was really neat. The group that put this all together really did a fantastic job and nailed all the little details.

Photo by Neal Howland
Photo by Neal Howland
So funny little story about this dress. Prior to the event I had tried the dress on a couple times without any troubles. However, the morning of the event I put the dress on and tried to zip it up. The zipper caught about 2 inches from the top. Even with Cori's help we couldn't get it to budge up or down! I was stuck in the dress! We discovered that a few of the metal teeth had fallen out of the zipper. This sometimes happens with older metal zippers. Fortunately I had my sewing kit with me so at the end of the day we used the seam ripper to carefully open one side of the zipper seam so I could take the dress off. I have a bunch of zippers in the stash, some new and some old, so I should be able to find a replacement one. Has anyone else ever experienced an "I'm stuck!" moment when wearing vintage?

Cori and a friend of ours debuted their 1940s LAPD uniforms for the event. They spent the better part of six months researching and finding all the pieces they needed. I'm working a post for them now. Neal took a series of really fun photos of the guys making a car stop. And guess who they pulled over? ;)

Photo by Voon Chew
 Thank you again to Voon Chew and Neal Howland for allowing me to share your photos.

I'm using a close up of the print as my new background image. What do you think? My old background was a close up of this dress, said to have been worn for Dwight Eisenhower's inaugural ball.


  1. Such a lovely dress Emily! That hat does go splendidly with the dress, and in my opinion is the perfect complimentary piece.

    the Middle Sister and Singer

  2. Cute print! You look great and your hair especially looks lovely.


  3. I love this dress! I also noticed you changed the back drop of you background to this print:) 40s novelty prints are not too easy to come by and I've noticed lately are quite expensive. I have some 40s rayon fabric that I am interested in working with. This dress looks so lovely on you. I hope you wear more prints:)

  4. This dress is amazing! Breathtaking, really, I would wear it in a heartbeat. The print is great, and you certainly don't have to feel uncomfortable when wearing it, as it suits you very well. Wonderful colors, too. Aw, and the hat is so adorable...
    I have never had a stuck zipper, but I once realised I had a tear in the underarm seam when I put on a dress for a special occasion. I was mending it manually in the car during our drive...

  5. What a gorgeous dress, 40s perfection!

  6. Your whole outfit is amazing! I think the print TOTALLY works for you! Great accessorizing too, it makes it so much more authentic and fabulous!

    1. Thanks! It was too hot for gloves but I think I have a pair or two that would work with this dress. I was good and wore my seamed stockings. :) Not that you can really see them in any of the pictures. Ah well.

  7. Both you and Cori look period perfect. The setting is fantastic! I have gotten stuck with old zippers, but never to the point of being stuck in the clothing!


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