mary mcfadden

1980s Mary McFadden Couture Sequin & Beaded Dress

In 1975 Mary McFadden invented a pleated technique that was a nod to the technique used by Fortuny (which has never been truly replicated as he did not leave his secret to anyone prior to his death). McFadden's version did not use silk but an innovative for its time, synthetic silk, whose pleating was permanent even after washing and wearing. This fabrication became her trademark and was considered cutting edge at the time. This particular dress is a wonderful example of how she used her signature pleated fabric with other elements to create high contrast and beautiful designs. The skirt and rounded, curved sleeves are done in a beautiful pale lavender pleat making it instantly recognizable as a McFadden design. It is of course the intricately beaded ans sequined bodice on a light layer of silk organza that I particularly love. The workmanship is exquisite. The contrast of these two elements is stunning. From her couture label and it is almost a sin that her dresses can be priced at such a reasonable number. Presents as excellent condition

The bodice is fully lined in a second layer of silk organza and the skirt & sleeves are unlined. It closes with a side, hidden set zipper. Tagged an 8 but of course check the measurements below. Note that there is a shadow under the arm in the photos - this is not a flaw but the dress shield that is tacked inside showing through the net. Upon close inspection there appears to have been a few stitches added along that seam to secure the net - its hard to tell as the sequins are hand applied as well. It appears strong and stable but mentioned for accuracy.

Shoulders: 15.5"
Bust: 18" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 15.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Hips: open
Bodice: 16.5" from neck to waist
Skirt: 27" from waist to hem

Modern Sizing Equivalent: SML-MED

Item# DD2322

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.