Thursday, April 9, 2009

A Short History of Cocktail Dresses

Or...A History of Short Cocktail Dresses

MrMartha loves the concept of the Cocktail Dress, but is the wrong gender (and doesn't have the calves) to indulge them as a fashion statement.....
thus, enjoys them as a spectator of the delightful bits of wearable froth that they are.

So many classic movie moments involve the Cocktail Dress....Audrey Hepburn in 'Breakfast at Tiffanys' is perhaps the most iconic image. MrMartha missed the apex of the genre, being a bit too young in the late 50s and early 1960s to have been in the thick of it, but has been delighted by many contemporary versions over the years.

Perhaps the only thing better than the Cocktail Dress itself, is that archaic bit of wonderment, the Cocktail Hat. All fluff and spangles, perched at a dangerous angle on the coiffure and seeming to defy gravity. As was so famously and perfectly stated in The Women, that 1939 cinematic gem of bitchiness, "Never underestimate what a cunning hat can do".

A wonderful new photo book has come out all about the Cocktail Dress, and TheDailyBeast website has a cute article and wonderful gallery of images from the book.

If you love the concept -- of having specific clothing intended only to look fabulous while quaffing beverages at smart cocktail parties -- as much as MrMartha, you will enjoy a look at The Gallery of stills from the book.