Noir lady 1940s dress black rayon crepe puff sleeve | XS

1930s - 1940s Clothing

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Size: XS
Bust: 34” flat, to fit approx. 32-34”
Waist: 26” flat, to fit approx. 25”
Hip: 34.5” flat, to fit up to 32”
Length: 49” from shoulder to hem in front (draped section is 3” longer)
Underarm to waist length: 8”
Back of neck to dropped waist seam length: 23”
Sleeve length: 11”
Sleeve opening: a tiny 8.5” total (measured flat and doubled)
Shoulder to shoulder: 14”, with large shoulder pads
Label: Martha Weathered

This sophisticated, film-noir-style, late 1940s cocktail dress features extra large shoulder pads in the squared shoulders, short, full/puffed sleeves with side slits (see photos), a tiny faille collar trimming the high neckline, and a horizontal pleat defining the dropped waist seam, below the fitted waist. The skirt is slightly flared, and has an off-center draped panel at the right front, below the large bow at the right hip. This draped skirt section is longer than the rest of the hem, and comes to a point—a neat detail! Curved seams at the natural waist (above the low-waist pleat) open up to provide a bit of room in the bust area. The dress fastens in back with metal zipper, and is unlined. The mid-weight, black rayon crepe has a lovely drape to it, utilized to full effect by the design of the dress. The large bow combines black faille (to match the tiny collar) and aqua moiré taffeta. The dress bears the label “Martha Weathered”, from the high-end Chicago shop of the same name, once located on Michigan Avenue. As you can see from the photo of the label, this lovely 1940s dress does have a wide, 3-inch seam allowance at the back of the skirt, below the zipper only. It is quite small, however, so please check the measurements carefully—especially the tiny sleeve openings. In very good to excellent condition, the only issue with this 40s-femme-fatale-worthy dress is some fraying to the ends of the bow.