A few weeks ago I happened to be in Cleveland, Ohio for a couple of days (spent at a convention for another organization I belong to). Now Cleveland has never been a place I thought I would visit, but after a trolley bus tour I was thinking it had some interesting history and places. Of course, the main place of interest is the Roll and Roll Hall of Fame, which was a short walk from my hotel. Saturday afternoon found the meetings over and with time before I needed to clean up and dress for the banquet, I strolled over, with a couple of friends, to visit the museum.
I am not going to go into the details of how great the museum actually is (and it is great) but the reason for my post is to show a couple if interesting items I saw on my very quick tour. Of course, we all know that performers costumes are all over-the-top, as you need to make a statement when up on the stage (and some continue that of stage), but have you ever had the chance to look at some of these costumes up close and personal? I was fascinated by the fact that I could see some heirloom sewing techniques, hand embroidery and even smocking on some of the garments!
This dress was worn by Diana Ross in 1971 and designed by Elizabeth Courtney and features smocking with diamante added, at the sleeve cuff and neckline. What an interesting way to have a very full sleeve, but control the fabric at the cuff.
This dress was worn by British singer Petula Clark
and has a trapuntro design on the front, with the outlines beaded. It looks like the fabric was painted first, then padded and beaded. It was made by a company called HARU.
The last items is a jacket (and very remiss of me I did not note who wore it, but it featured several heirloom techniques- puffing sleeve detail); lace (dyed on left top front); applique and even patchwork!
So, you just never know when or where you might find smocking and heirloom sewing techniques-sometimes it is where you least expect it and it may just make you think again about how you might take these techniques and go a little outside of that box.........