gene shelly

1960s Gene Shelly Gold Sequin w Paillette Detailing Stretch Knit Dress

In its heyday the Gene Shelly of California label was a must have. Gene Shelly dresses are amazing and they are some of the best of the early sequinned vintage pieces that you can find. All of the sequin work that covers this dress was done by hand in Hong Kong on American manufactured knit. The company would send the stretch wool fabric to be hand beaded or sequinned to Hong Kong. The fabric was then sent back to the US and the dresses were made in California. At the time, Hong Kong was doing the best sequin and bead work in the world outside of the specialty ateliers in Paris. Having the bead work down there actually helped keep the cost down though the dresses were still fairly expensive. Full length pieces cost around $600 dollars in the mid-1960s - which is the equivalent of about $4700 in current USD.

The dress has the label's signature stretch knit base which makes it extremely easy and comfortable to wear. This one has a gold knit to match the sequins that cover its surface. Onto the knit are thousands and thousands of tightly spaced, bright gold sequins. Each sequin has been meticulously applied by hand into place. Every inch of the fabric is literally covered with sequins. The neckline is cut wider across so that your collarbones show and the back has a low V dip to it. Edging the neckline is a dense application of larger gold paillettes that are set to stand up from the fabric to create a 3D feel. This same edging circles the end of each sleeve. The dress hugs the body from the neckline to the hem and I love how the hem has that little curved notch at the front More of those fabulous 3D paillettes circle the entire hem. The dimension and texture created from the result of all of the hand work done on the dress is wonderful. The dress itself is immensely flattering with its figure hugging shape. The knit is set on the bias so it shapes and molds to your figure once on. Excellent condition.

The base is a gold toned stretch knit and the dress closes with a painted metal zipper at the back. The sequins are all applied by hand and I see no bare spots. A little wear to the lustre of the sequins here and there that is normal for sequins of this age. The measurements are taken flat and shows the comfortable range of each spot. Note that it is a touch brighter gold in person and it is even more of a wow when you see it in real life. It appears to have been worn very little if at all. The stretch will allow for a variety of sizes

Sleeves: 19"
Shoulders: 14"
Bust: 16-19" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 12-15" flat across from side seam to side seam
Hips: 16-19" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 41" from shoulder to hem

Modern Sizing Equivalent: XS-MED

Item# DD3294

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.