In 1902, every society woman aspired to have her dresses made by Worth, the premier haute couture name of the day. Worth’s 1902 Peacock Dress is a stunningly beautiful feat of intricate goldwork embroidery, and perhaps the most dazzling star in their repertoire.
It is a two piece dress – bodice and skirt – that is so heavily embroidered in gold and silver that the base fabric cannot be seen. The pattern is a network of interlocking stylised peacock feathers, each of which is accented with an “eye” made from a real beetle elytra (wing cover). The neckline is accented with a lace panel embellished with rhinestones and sequins, more exquisite lace hangs from the shoulders, and the hem is encircled with white silk roses. It is a unique state gown of extraordinary quality and skill.
The Peacock Dress dazzles and entices the viewer to ask a hundred questions, and most of all to wonder… how did it feel to wear a dress like this?