See What I Mean?

by Erin on September 25, 2009


Ceil Chapman

Why isn't anyone wearing THIS on the red carpet? This would be what I'd make if I had to do a red-carpet ANYTHING. This would be stunning in old-gold satin, with maybe tulle for that bit sticking out at the side between the scallops. Or a deep, deep fuchsia pink for a blonde. That petal bodice is to die for, and would show off a necklace (and other things) beautifully.

Who would you put in this dress? What shoes? I think NOT strappy sandals, but an open-toed d'orsay satin pump, with a diamante buckle.

[This pattern's from Lisa's Vintage Fashion Library and it's a repro, which means it's available in a range of sizes (bust 32-48) ... for only $19.50! And she's running a sale through the 27th, in honor of her last teenager turning twenty! Use the code THOMAS for 20% off.]

{ 35 comments… read them below or add one }

Anonymous September 25, 2009 at 10:16 am

NOW youre talking! That last gown was a bit matronly. This is to die for.-Sandra

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Lisa Simeone September 25, 2009 at 10:20 am

Wow! Even before I scrolled down, I said immediately, Ceil Chapman. Her designs are instantly recognizable. Im still holding out for just one Ceil Chapman, but all the surviving ones on eBay are either too small, or if theyre average size, they go for hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of dollars. Youre right — nothing could be more glamorous.

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diopsideanddiamonds September 25, 2009 at 10:26 am

Ohh, thats nice!Were I a sewer, I think Id be tempted to see make that underskirting in something contrasty – maybe the gold fabric for the scalloped outer, and fuchsia or deep purple for the under. Or a silver fabric outer with an awesome-shade-of-blue under.Id probably put it on Liv Tyler. Shes always struck me as the old-fashioned looking sort.

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Liz September 25, 2009 at 10:40 am

Amy Adams in sea green.

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Kristen September 25, 2009 at 10:40 am

winona ryder always seems to pull off vintage nicely. ever since she wore fingerwaves to the oscars….that pattern is perfection.

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Paige September 25, 2009 at 10:53 am

Gorgeous. I wish I got to do a red carpet something-or-other to wear such a dress (and had the body for it).I think Id have Kate Winslet wear it, in deep scarlet, with maybe an antique beige lace fabric on the scallop. I agree about the shoes–those were perfect.

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evalyn September 25, 2009 at 12:03 pm

Gorgeous dress. Dyed to match satin pumps to be truely vintage. (These days, a neutral like black, gold or silver.) Black satin or taffeta w/ white tulle with tiny black dots (dotted swiss – is that black or white?)for the underskirt so it froths up like sea foam, and lots of diamond jewelry. I feel a foxtrot coming on…

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Theresa September 25, 2009 at 12:14 pm

Scarlett Johansen in any color! The girl is gorgeous and even more so in vintage.

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the guilty party September 25, 2009 at 12:40 pm

Peep toes, dude. And an amazing Prussian blue (hell, why cant ALL my wardrobe be in Prussian blue?).

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emilyjayne September 25, 2009 at 12:56 pm

Wow!Id love that in either a midnight blue or apple green with lots and lots of underskirts and a peep-toe platform pump/court dyed to match with some sort of sparkly adornment on the toe. Only a tiny pretty gold box-clutch would do to go with this, I;d keep the neckline open so just some earrings, no necklace.Why is this not in my wardrobe?

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Melissa September 25, 2009 at 12:59 pm

Salma Hayek, in chocolate brown.

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Anonymous September 25, 2009 at 1:11 pm

What a find, this is beautiful!! In any color, on any grown up woman, and those are great shoes. If only my life went with it!Dawn

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Joni September 25, 2009 at 1:21 pm

Actually, it would be very, very modern in black taffeta with hot pink for the underskirt. Although personally, Im seeing it in emerald green.

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Cookie September 25, 2009 at 1:23 pm

Oh MY! The neckline reminds me of what Judy Garland wore when she sand [i]Melancholy Baby[/i] in [i]A Star is Born[/i]. That version was deep lavender moir, I think.Id like to see this in a dull silver, though white, claret and aqua are usually my favorite dressy colors.This dress is hyper feminine. And its important that your head and shoulders have a striking frame when youre interviewed on that carpet! (PS: I am also of the no necklace with cleavage and heavy earrings school. Theres something subliminally smooth and naked about not breaking up that creamy expanse of skin.)

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Cookie September 25, 2009 at 1:24 pm

OH POOP. My fancy attempt at italicizing just died a quick, pathetic death :(

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Hana September 25, 2009 at 2:04 pm

I cant help thinking yellow… not that Id wear it in yellow, but I dont have an occasion to wear a dress like that anyway. I wish I could see more details of it! I wish I could see it on a red carpet photo! Because yes, thats where it belongs.

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Cookie September 25, 2009 at 2:09 pm

Judy Garland variation:http://www.whitleyheights.com/pics/garlandstarborn1.jpgAnd Im sorry, she sang Melancholy Baby in that movie, she didnt sand it. Her voice never became that raspy.

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LadyLaurelin September 25, 2009 at 2:19 pm

Liv Tyler… I cant see a color, but I do see red lips and nice earrings, but no necklace to mess up that fabulous neckline.

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Sara September 25, 2009 at 3:01 pm

YES! Maybe now that you are in CA, you could get a job as a red carpet stylist??!

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Lindsey in AL September 25, 2009 at 3:20 pm

I think Jenna Fischer would be lovely in this! She has the sort of sweet, old-fashioned charm that would be just right. Shes petite as well and I think is more of a dress for a shorter woman, rather than a tall, willowy goddess-type. I still cant decide on a color but those shoes are GORGEOUS!I also agree with whoever said Amy Adams in green because, YES! She is lovely as well and this would be perfect on her.I watched the awards the other night for about half an hour. I saw nothing even remotely original or very attractive. Theres little that I even remember except that Tina Feys shoulder seams looked really lopsided and some other young person in red looked like she had hers on backward :| It was all pretty underwhelming, as they say.

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Marjie September 25, 2009 at 4:15 pm

Scarlett Johansen in Red.

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Jen September 25, 2009 at 5:08 pm

Susan Sarandon: deep eggplant silk taffeta

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Chantelle September 25, 2009 at 5:34 pm

I love love love this dress… as well as the other fancy Ceil Chapman dresses. Id love to see any of them up on the red carpet. Theyre elegant, timeless dresses.I cant think of who Id like to see in this style or what colour because I can see it in almost any colourway.

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Trude September 25, 2009 at 5:51 pm

This would be gorg in ANY color!! Thanks for sharing!

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Cel Petro September 25, 2009 at 7:30 pm

Why indeed? More Ceil Chapman!!

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Mea September 25, 2009 at 10:10 pm

Sophia Loren in Red, with the Manolos custom-dyed to match.I want to be like her now, never mind when Im in my 70s!

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Emily September 26, 2009 at 12:37 pm

Rachel McAdams in … Red. Or silver or gold. And I love Amy Adams in green!

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Bobbi September 27, 2009 at 1:55 am

Love old patterns!

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barbie2be September 27, 2009 at 3:30 am

love. Love. LOVE! i ordered the pattern. now i just need to figure out how to get it made before my cruise!

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barbie2be September 27, 2009 at 3:39 am

wait… did you say you are here? in california? in the bay area? me too! i must meet you so that i may worship at your feet!

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Jamie September 27, 2009 at 3:50 pm

I think Natalie Portman or Keira Knightley would both look wonderful in this dress in a deep purple with lavender lace contrast. (And is anyone else besides me kind of unnerved by how alike those two look?) I also agree with Scarlett Johansen- she is so pretty and vintage-looking herself (in a good way!) that she could totally pull this off, of course in bright lipstick red.

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Theresa September 27, 2009 at 8:17 pm

Yes Natalie and Keira look very much alike…probably why the played Padme/Padmes maid pretending to be Padme in Star Wars. I always get them confused.

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Rachel September 28, 2009 at 5:42 am

Id go with Catherine Zeta Jones in a deep emerald or saphire

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Latter-Day Flapper September 28, 2009 at 8:24 am

Id do it in kingfisher blue and wear silver shoes, which probably means Im tacky, but I dont care.

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Anonymous September 28, 2009 at 6:14 pm

Christina Hendricks in emerald green taffeta, matching satin pumps. Grown up elegance. Thats why I like her character on Mad Men. She wears grown up clothes that women over 30 will look good in.

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