The Costumes of Downton Abbey – Part 3

Posted on May 27, 2014

And for our final installment, as Lady Sybil would say:

 

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FORMAL WEAR, BITCHEZ.

Feast your eyes on all the gorgeous beading and embroidery, darlings, with minimal comment from us because really, what could we add to these pictures? These items are all absolutely stunning in person (although a few, like Sybil’s harem outfit, showed a little wear and tear).

 

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That fabric is gorgeous. What a striking color combination. It doesn’t read as well on film.

 

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Mary’s “Carson passing out” dress. You need something like a giant butler collapsing to take the focus away from this show-stopper.

 

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The display had the following quote from costume designer Caroline McCall that this dress was “an original period dress believed to be by the House of Babani, Paris,” which had “perished,” leaving nothing but the original embroidery, which they remounted on silk velvet dyed to match the original dress and “remade in the style of a Babani.”

All this info and skill; all this stuff that enriches the story. That’s why we love good costuming.

 

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Beautiful, but very stiff and heavy-looking. We don’t know how anyone could wear that for any length of time. The coat is gorgeous.

 

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That is some seriously crazy beading.

 

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This Cora gown was modeled on a Lanvin dress of the period and uses vintage embroidery for the panel running down the front.

 

 

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And then there was the part of the exhibit that had every lady in attendance gasp when she rounded the turn and saw it:

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Okay, we gasped a little, too. The proposal is on a loop, with falling snow projected all around it, causing quite the bottleneck of gawkers. Mary’s dress (also based on period Lanvin) being even more beautiful up close had a lot to do with it too.

 

 

 

Part 1 can be found here. Part 2 can be found here.

 

[Photo Credit: tomandlorenzo.com, PBS]

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