Vintage 1940s Egyptian Cocktail Dress Black Wool Crepe and Silk - S
Brand Poppy's Vintage Clothing
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This is a wonderful vintage black crepe cocktail dress made by “Marybelle” of Zamalek, which is the wealthiest district of Cairo, Egypt. The dress has a narrow V shaped neckline, elbow length sleeves, a defined waistline and is made in a below the knee length. The bodice, bottom skirt and sleeves are decorated with a flame or branch shape silk appliqué while the skirt has a straight black silk panel down the centre. The dress has a metal zipper at the side and is unlined.
Age: difficult to date precisely, but most likely 1940s
Label: Marybelle Zamalek with Arabic script
Material: Crepe that I believe is made of wool
Sizing: No size is indicated, and although this should fit a small size, please note the following measurements for fit, taking into consideration the style of the dress:
Shoulders: 14” across from one shoulder/sleeve seam to the other shoulder/sleeve seam
Sleeves: 13” long from the shoulder seam
Sleeve inseam: 9”
Bust: 35” around, taken under the sleeves
Waist: 26”-27” around
Hips: 36” around
Length: 39 1/2”, measured flat
Condition: This dress is in very nice condition - no wear, tear, soiling or odour. This has been well cared for and stored over the years.
Cairo was quite cosmopolitan during the 1940s and a major tourist destination, known for its “grand hotels”. It had been under British influence from 1882 until 1922 when it became a kingdom. Western influence was diminished in 1952 with the establishment of a republic under Gamal Nasser. Finding Western influenced fashion from this period is rather rare - nice collectible vintage cocktail dress!