Carefree Valentine

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I’m excited to share my navy version of the famous and fabulous cupid’s arrows dress worn by Ginger Rogers in 1938’s Carefree. This is my second version of the dress. The first was in a beautiful black wool crepe, but I decided a few years ago to cut black out of my wardrobe, so I reimagined the dress in navy blue as one of my 2018 “make nine” projects. The heart is felt applique, and the arrows are all hand embroidered in gold thread. The fabric is a medium-weight polyester crepe from Misan West on Goldhawk Road. I normally avoid polyester, but I was having difficulty finding a rayon crepe, and this one had the perfect hand, texture and drape of vintage rayon, and in the colour I was looking for, so I went with it.

Image source:  Pinterest

Image source: Pinterest

Image source:  tumblr

Image source: tumblr

I was also delighted to score an original 1940s navy hat to wear with the dress, with the perfect wide brim just like the one Ginger Rogers wore in the film. Mine is actually a “make do and mend” project of some enterprising lady back in the day, who made alterations to the crown and also cut a crescent off the back brim and reattached at the front to give a deeper front brim.

With hair styling magic by Miss Bee Townsend I felt every bit the glamorous Hollywood star! Joined by Rachel Marquez, we headed to Notting Hill and had an absolute blast on our shoot with Nicole Engelmann.

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I’m probably most proud of that little arrow on the sleeve - this was also a feature on the original inspiration dress

I’m probably most proud of that little arrow on the sleeve - this was also a feature on the original inspiration dress

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My outfit:

  • Dress: made from a self-drafted pattern, with hand embroidery

  • Gloves, handbag and hat: vintage

  • Shoes: Clarks

  • Stockings: What Katie Did

  • Earrings: Splendette