gene shelly

1960s Gene Shelley Pale Ice Blue Silk Dress w Silver Sequins & Beads

In its heyday the Gene Shelly of California label was highly sought after. The label was doing some of the best of the early sequinned vintage pieces that you could find anywhere on the planet. All of the sequin work that covers this dress was done by hand in Hong Kong on American manufactured fabric. The company would send the fabric to be hand sequinned and beaded. After that was done the fabric would be sent back to California where the dresses were made. At the time, Hong Kong was doing the best sequin and bead work in the world outside of the specialty ateliers in Paris. This dress is not perfect but it is still very beautiful and with a little work it could be perfect again. 

This dress is especially interesting because it bears many similarities to the one I sold before that ended up being the twin of one worn by Diana Ross and The Supremes. This dress has a very similar layout of the beads and sequins but it has been done on a silk based rather then a knit. This base of this one is a beautiful pale ice blue that perfectly sets off the silver sequins that are applied to it. There are hundreds of silver sequins that are laid out flat onto the silk from shoulder to hem. Each sequin has been meticulously applied by hand into its set place. Every inch of the fabric is covered with sequins and the dress glimmers in even the lowest of light. Set in among the silver sequins are big faceted pink and coral paste crystals. These circle the neckline like a built in piece of jewellery. There is also wide band of them applied around the lower skirt. Each crystal has been is hand sewn into place and they are large enough that they each have a 3D effect. Tiny faux pearls and seed beads outline them. Around the neck line and sleeves are coral beads and faux pearls. The dimension and texture created from the result of all of this hand work is wonderful. The dress itself is immensely flattering with its figure hugging shape and all of the seams in it are set vertically to give the wearer a beautiful long line. The base dress is in excellent condition but there are sequins missing. Please review the condition notes below.

The base is an icy blue silk  and the dress closes with a painted metal zipper at the back. The sequins and embellishments are all applied by hand.There are areas of missing sequins. Most notably across the upper shoulders and down the top of the cap sleeves. Some other areas in the body of the dress. These could be filled in with modern silver sequins. Or it could be worn as is. Priced with the work needed to make it perfect taken into account. Please review the photos after the label shot. 

Shoulders: 15"
Bust: 18" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 14" flat across from side seam to side seam
Hips: 19.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 55" from top of dress to hem

Modern Sizing Equivalent: SML-MED

Item# DD3502

This garment has been professionally cleaned, pressed and is odor free. Thoroughly checked over before shipping, it will be ready to wear upon arrival.

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Please review all measurements carefully. More often than not, vintage garments do not fit any size category exactly. If in doubt, measure a garment of your own that fits and is a similar cut and compare it's measurements to the listed measurements below.