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Dress - Indoor Sports

Indoor Sports

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    London (possibly, made)

  • Date:

    1937 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    synthetic or semi-synthetic blend (viscose rayon ?) with hand-painted and/or stencilled design; fur, suede, plastic.

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Joanna & Philip Ross in memory of Leah Barnett Ross (nee Lyons)

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

Full length dress in black synthetic or semi-synthetic blend (possibly viscose rayon), hand-painted throughout with a repeating pattern of red, green, white and gold skiers and snow-laden pine trees, probably stencilled to ensure the repeat. The dress cut in a slim line, with a straight skirt slit up the centre front to mid-calf, and with a fan-pleated godet in the centre back. The bodice raglan cut, short sleeved, with a high round neckline, the collar and cuffs of grey-gold fur. A short peplum at the waist giving a jacket effect. The bodice fastens centre front with four bound buttonholes, each of which holds two miniature plastic skis utilised as buttons, and the opening below the waist is fastened with press studs. Black belt in soft suede leather, faced with leather and fastening with two white plastic skis threaded through metal hoops and attached by a fine silver chain to the belt. A tape sewn inside the lower hem of the skirt gives the name of the dress as 'Indoor Sports.'

Place of Origin

London (possibly, made)


1937 (made)



Materials and Techniques

synthetic or semi-synthetic blend (viscose rayon ?) with hand-painted and/or stencilled design; fur, suede, plastic.


Length: 145 cm, Circumference: 66 cm waist, Circumference: 80 cm hips, Length: 104.5 cm skirt, Length: 93 cm belt, Width: 5 cm belt

Object history note

This dress was owned and worn by Leah Barnett Ross (nee Lyons, 1915-1969). Leah lived in London, her maternal grandfather was the founder of a large kosher butcher shop in the East End. During the War Leah volunteered with the WRVS.

She was painted wearing the dress by the society portrait painter James Penniston Barraclough (1891-1942).The painting was comissioned by her husband, Basil Ross, whom she married in 1935. The painting hung in the hallway of the family home.

Descriptive line

'Indoor Sports'. Long black dress with hand-painted design of skiers and winter sports, 1937, probably British.


Paint; Fur; Plastic; Metal


Painting; Sewing


Fashion; Women's clothes; Textiles; Clothing; Judaism


Textiles and Fashion Collection

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