Intern Meredith, “wears” a dress from the collection!

In my role as an intern at the Gregg Museum, I have pulled hundreds of items throughout the semester for students in the Pre-Industrial World Textiles class taught by Susan Brandeis through the College of Design at NC State. Each week this class focuses on one region, and it was my job to bring out these pieces, arranged them for viewing, and compile the appropriate information for the class to use. Through this process I was able to closely examine items through out the world and various time periods. There were multiple times throughout my period here that I thought to myself, “I would wear that,” but standards of care for the permanent collection prohibit that kind of interaction with these rare historic pieces. So as a final farewell to my time spent at the Gregg I have used a little digital magic to place myself in one of the textiles we looked at.

The item I chose was a a green fringed evening dress that comes from the period around the 1940s. Being that is one of my all time favorite colors and that it has fringe-galore, I had to “try it on.” The dress is made out of rayon crepe fabric. It has has a long torso, camisole style bodice which is stiched in one inch chevron bands of aqua fringe. Below the six bands of chevron is a 34 inch drop of aqua fringes to the floor, from the dropped waistline. Underneath the fringe, the skirt has 15 inch slits up both sides.

Aqua fringed silk and rayon evening dress, c. 1940 Transferred from the Fashion Institute of Technology, 1998.003.012

Aqua fringed silk and rayon evening dress, c. 1940
Transferred from the Fashion Institute of Technology, 1998.003.012

I chose this dress because I have yet to completely shut out my childhood dress up fantasies. Given the opportunity I would dress up in an everyday and a formal dress from each time period. Looking at these pieces gives me more insight into the times, places and the individuals who would have used and worn the items. I feel like it is one of the best ways to receive insight about other times… with out a time machine that is!

Meredith Wynne – Spring 2014 Intern

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