Theatre Costume

ca.1930-1950
Theatre Costume thumbnail 1
Theatre Costume thumbnail 2
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Not currently on display at the V&A


'Dame' costume from an unidentified pantomime. Long-sleeved body suit cutting off just above the thighs featuring exaggerated 'feminine' padding to suggest a large bust and posterior, parodying a 'principal boy' tunic of the late 19th century/early 20th century. Black faille fabric with gold silk at chest and upper sleeves. Bodice silk is bordered with green and gold braiding and is embellished with jewel clusters at corners. Sleeve silk is bordered with strips of purple velvet, decorated with 'crystal' buttons. There are mock-crystal 'shard' buttons at cuffs and diamantés at the side of each hip. Black knotted fringe shadows the bottom hemline. Hook and eye closure along the centre of the back.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Machine stitching, fringing, padding, faille, silk.
Brief Description
'Dame' costume from unidentified production, possibly Wimbledon, 1930s or 1950s. Long-sleeved body suit in black and gold with jewel embellishments, fringing and exaggerated padding.
Physical Description
'Dame' costume from an unidentified pantomime. Long-sleeved body suit cutting off just above the thighs featuring exaggerated 'feminine' padding to suggest a large bust and posterior, parodying a 'principal boy' tunic of the late 19th century/early 20th century. Black faille fabric with gold silk at chest and upper sleeves. Bodice silk is bordered with green and gold braiding and is embellished with jewel clusters at corners. Sleeve silk is bordered with strips of purple velvet, decorated with 'crystal' buttons. There are mock-crystal 'shard' buttons at cuffs and diamantés at the side of each hip. Black knotted fringe shadows the bottom hemline. Hook and eye closure along the centre of the back.
Dimensions
  • Collar opening width: 14cm (Note: Laid flat)
  • Neckline to crotch length: 84cm (Note: Laid flat)
  • Waist width: 48cm (Note: Laid flat)
  • Shoulder to shoulder width: 42cm (Note: Laid flat)
  • Shoulder to cuff length: 64cm (Note: Laid flat)
  • Weight: 2.1kg
Production typeUnique
Credit line
Given by Peter F. Bazeley
Object history
Pantomime dame costume ca.1930-1950 from an unidentified production. It has been suggested that the costume was worn by an actor playing dame at Wimbledon Theatre in the 1930s or 1950s.
Production
Reason For Production: Commission
Subjects depicted
Collection
Accession Number
S.8-1976

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record createdMay 14, 2004
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