When I was visiting my Grandma Angelina over Thanksgiving, she mentioned that she had two dresses for me. I immediately perked up.
My Grandma grew up in Brooklyn, then moved to Connecticut when she got married, in 1953. After the incredible choices New York had to offer, Connecticut seemed like a wasteland. Luckily, my grandma had a wonderful friend, Marie, who still lived in New York. Whenever Marie saw something my grandma might like– from china place-settings to bolts of tweed to a dress for an upcoming party– she would pick it up and ship it to my grandma. "Back then," she told me, "your size was your size."
This black dress was one of the things Marie picked out for my grandma. "
My grandma didn't have the original belt anymore, which she told me was wide, so I used a satin sash from another dress and tied it into a big bow.
As my grandma expected, I paired it with wild heels. I thought these Prada platforms would be perfect.
The second dress she gave me is even more incredible. It was made for her, for her honeymoon, by my grandpa's sister, Marianne. Marianne worked as a seamstress at Bergdorf Goodman in New York. When my grandma got engaged, they looked at gowns in Henri Bendel for ideas, and then Marianne made one exactly how my grandma wanted! You can tell from just looking at this dress how talented she is. The covered buttons, the collar, the piping... everything is considered and executed so perfectly.
When I slipped this dress over my head, it fit me PERFECTLY. And isn't the color gorgeous! I don't have anything orange and now I'm wondering why. It's made of silk taffeta.
I really like vintage, but getting a piece passed down from a family member is just about as good as it gets, and getting something MADE by a family member is unreal. My grandma kept these dresses for over 50 years. She told me she couldn't bear to get rid of them or put them in the dress-up box. I'm so glad she didn't. They are treasures.