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Help from someone who knows their silk slips?

Discussion in 'PUBLIC Vintage Fashion - Ask Questions Get Answers' started by topazera, May 19, 2020.

  1. topazera

    topazera Registered Guest

    Okay, here's another of my finds that I'd love to have someone with more knowledge take a look at! At the thrift store, this slip jumped out because of the higher quality. It's made of pretty heavy silk with ecru alençon (is that right?) lace inserted at the neck and hem. The silk is cut on the bias and there's a gusset on the side and a couple darts and seams at the bust to really create shape. The majority of the sewing is done by hand, minus the zigzag stitch putting in the gusset, the seam with the selvages, and construction of the strap. The main seams are french seams and the edges of silk are left raw and whipped down when attached to the lace.

    It looks like slips I've seen listed as from the '40s and it certainly looks like it could be that age but the thing is: the rings on the adjustable straps of the slip are plastic. Is this a slip from early into when that would have been done and if so, would that have been in or by the '40s? Or is this newer than that and just high quality? I've tried looking at vintage slips online but they usually don't mention if the rings are metal or plastic; it's not something generally photographed in detail either. So, I'd love to hear from someone who handles these! Thank you so much!

    P5197219.jpg P5197220.jpg P5197222.jpg P5197223.jpg P5197224.jpg P5197226.jpg P5197227.jpg
    Last edited: May 19, 2020
  2. claireshaeffer

    claireshaeffer VFG Member

    I'm green with envy. This is a beautiful slip.
    The edges under the lace are overcast by hand and should not be described as "left raw."
  3. sewingmachinegirl

    sewingmachinegirl VFG Member

    That slip is stunning! It is possible the straps were altered more recently and the plastic adjustment sliders added then.The machine topstitching on the straps also does not look right for the workmanship of the remainder of the garment.
    But it also could be a modern very high end slip made in a 40's style, this is my feeling about your slip. The fittings if original should be enamelled metal, and the straps didn't always have them .
    Also-make sure you dont iron this treasure- steaming it inside out would be my suggestion.
    here are some lovely slips from a catalogue for you to look at!

    Last edited: May 20, 2020
  4. bycinbyhand

    bycinbyhand VFG Member

    I have been looking at the photos a while... I *think* that this is a lovely more modern slip. Beautifully made as if a 1940s slip, maybe from the 1980s. I came in several slips very much like this, the construction quite similar but the sliders on all of mine were metal. By the way, I knew the previous owner and the slips were all from about late1930s-early1940s.
  5. poppysvintageclothing

    poppysvintageclothing Administrator Staff Member

  6. Rue_de_la_Paix

    Rue_de_la_Paix VFG Member

    I also think it is older, late 30s to 1940s. The workmanship is stunning, it is a very special piece of lingerie. Perhaps French, imported here by a high end department store.

    Can you tell what kid of plastic it is? It almost looks like ivorine, French ivory, or another faux ivory "plastic". While not as usual as metal, they could be found on early slips as were tiny buttons made of same. I have seen these on things going back to the 1920s.

    Not sure, but what I can say it it is really outstanding. Yum! beatingHeart
  7. poppysvintageclothing

    poppysvintageclothing Administrator Staff Member

  8. topazera

    topazera Registered Guest

    Thank you all so much for your insight! I've never owned a piece of nice lingerie from any period and I've really been a bit confused by this one because I would have thought it should have enameled metal if it was as old as it looked, just from poking around on the internet. Looking really closely at the plastic rings, I do think they could be an early plastic because they have a hand hewn sort of look? They're warm to the touch. They're not molded plastic and they don't look neatly stamped or die cut, they're flat and look almost like they were carved out from a thin sheet. They aren't entirely symmetrical, some edges are a bit rough, and the edges are at a bit of a bevel but it doesn't look even. They have a sheen to them which has some scratches and pits, they're opaque when looking at them but translucent when held up to the light. I really don't know much about the early plastics, I did a bit of googling of ivorine and actually, they did remind me of the flat sheets of this chatelaine calendar or the thin sheets they used for labeling. I'm not sure what distinguishing qualities I'd be looking for though!

    If these were coming from a later period (especially like the '80s), I'd think they'd have a smooth molded or stamped plastic? Though I'm not sure how the topstitching that @sewingmachinegirl mentions fits in? The topstitching does even look a bit wonky in places, especially compared to how neat the rest of it is!

    I tried to take a few more pictures but they're hard to capture, being quite tiny and having a sheen. You can see an example of the rough edge maybe mostly clearly on the upper left of the first photo:
    P5207233.jpg P5207235.jpg P5207238.jpg P5207243.jpg

    And also, thank you so much for all the kind words! I'm eating up all the ideas and tips and catalogue pictures. I'm sure I don't have to tell people here just how excited I was to find this for $7 in a rack full of polyester nightgowns! I couldn't quite believe what I was seeing, I snatched it up so quickly and that's before I even realized it'd fit me too! I'll love this no matter its age because, whenever it's from, the care put into making this is what really makes it special.
    Last edited: May 21, 2020
  9. claireshaeffer

    claireshaeffer VFG Member

    There are ateliers in Paris that make couture slips or there were. I'm not sure whether any are still in business.
    Assuming this slip is 30s or even 40s, there would have been a choice of ateliers for couture customers. I assume some couture Houses also made them, but I haven't seen any.
  10. bycinbyhand

    bycinbyhand VFG Member

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