Made in the workrooms of Arthur Lazenby Liberty's famous shop. Liberty's catalogues had drawings of Liberty Art Costumes and concluded with four pages of 'Artistic Dress for Children '. This is a particularly nice style of dress, such a shame there is fading.
Similar to the dresses drawn by Kate Greenaway at the height of fashion in London and Paris from the 1890s.
In 1884 Liberty & Co's Artistic and Historic Costume Department opened with its own studio and workrooms making garments from Liberty silks. E W Godwin, the architect and friend of Arthur Liberty was appointed to be director of the department. Godwin was Hon Secretary of the Costume Society and had made a study of historic costume. The children's department produced designs based on Kate Greenaway's illustrations. Smocking for both adult and children's dresses was extremely popular.
Labelled Liberty & Co London & Paris S5 .The mid blue Tyrian silk with round neck embroidered in self coloured silks with a continuous fruit meander, above a deep panel of smocking, in a variety of designs, a V of smocking below the belt, similarly embroidered to the collar, the long sleeves with smocking and embroidered bands to the cuffs, the back with sik covered and embroidered buttons and loops and top and waist.
Shoulder to hem 29 1/2 in; 75 cm
The front of the dress has faded. The worst area is front left hand side, as you look at the dress, but there are slight markings going from the skirt smocking down the skirt. The left hand sleeve also has slight fading. It must have been hanging in the sun. One fruit has come unravelled on the front waistband. The back of the dress is unfaded. There are two small light brown marks. Ask for more photos.
In some Liberty catalogues there was a section Artistic Dress for Children, all with Kate Greenaway type dresses with smocking at waist, neck or cuffs.
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