Friday, May 6, 2011

Mayor's Charity Ball - Dress Option #5, The 1980's Little Black Dress

My final vintage option for the Mayor's Charity Ball is a classic late 1980's beaded black dress.  A few years ago I picked up a heavily embellished black and silver silk jacket by Laurence Kazar.  After languishing in a thrift shop for several months, probably because it looks like something Michael Jackson would have worn on stage, I decided to give it a home.  It turns out to have the the honor of being the first of many beaded dresses, tops and jackets I've acquired over the years.  There is something really enchanting about these elaborate pieces, perhaps the enormous shoulder pads remind me of my youth or maybe I've just gotten old.  Many of these dresses were very expensive to purchase new and were marketed to mature successful women.  The majority of these lovely dresses were made of silk in India and sold in the USA by Laurence Kazar and Stengay.  Right now you can find a nice selection at very reasonable prices on the vintage market.  The dress I have picked out for the Mayor's Ball is made by Nite Line and is not quite as elaborate as the Kazars and Stengays in my collection.  This dress has a simple scoop neckline, V-Back, and sheer long sleeves.  The handkerchief hem hits me just above the knee.  The dress is accented with black beads throughout but the dress retains it's sheer quality which seems more appropriate for a spring event.  Once again, jewelry can be kept to a minimum, I'll add a pair of shiny drop earrings, and the nude peep toe shoes update the look.


Vintage Nite Line Black Beaded Party Dress


Detail of Beadwork

Pro's and Con's Dress Option #5

Pros:
1.)  It's a simple black dress, one can't go wrong.
2.)  Fits me well.
3.)  Looks okay with the madras plaid cummerbund and tie my husband will be sporting,

Cons:
1.) It's a black dress, so much for light and frilly and being daring!

Tomorrow is the big day so check back next week to see what dress I wore to the Ball.  Spoiler Alert:  I have two additional dresses waiting in the wings, one is not vintage but is second hand. The other could be vintage, or at least on the cusp of being vintage.  Both are long and comfortable and depending on the weather, which is unseasonably cold for a tent event,  going long may be the practical choice (ugh, I sound like mother I am).

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