Ok, I admit I feel a bit poorly about ranting on (and on, and on, and on....) about the whole eco-UNfriendly recycled vintage dress/gown controversy that I wrote about yesterday and a few weeks ago. So you can imagine how thrilled I was to read about a much more "friendly" and well executed vintage gown makeover in the May issue of Vogue.
Elettra Wiedemann is one very fortunate (and beautiful) young lady. Daughter of the stunning Isabella Rossellini and granddaughter of the iconic screen beauty Ingrid Bergman, she found herself the heir of a trunk full of Ms. Bergman's evening dresses that had somehow been long forgotten (a vintage treasure hunters dream find!) She humbly admits: "My family is so amazing, but it's also so overwhelming and overpowering...I'd felt honored to be part of my family but also not sure what accomplishments were mine and what accomplishments belonged to someone else bigger than me." She also makes this insightful comment: "It's interesting how clothes can connect you to a sentimentality that can be very complicated sometimes." (I nod my head in silent agreement as I contemplate the part of my grandmothers wardrobe I've inherited...)
Ms. Wiedemann, in honor of her grandmother, has chosen to wear one of her gowns to the Costume Institute Gala (aka The Met Ball ) on the 2nd of May. The gown she chose was created for Ms. Bergman by the postwar Roman couturiere Fernanda Gattinoni, who also created the costumes for Ms. Bergman in the 1952 film Europa '51. Designer Prabal Gurung was called upon as the "cosmetic surgeon" for the dress, as there were a few issues with fit & fabric. Both heir & designer agreed that it was important to maintain the integrity of the dress and to pay homage to it's original owner, which, being her grandmother, would be of utmost importance to any grateful heir of such beautiful pieces of the past.
"It's still the same dress," says Wiedemann, "but it feels a little bit sexier, more contemporary, and younger."
"The beauty of this dress," Gurung adds, "is it's history."
I think we have a winner.
(All quotes from May 2011 US Vogue p. 172 & 174)
xx ~ Michelle