I like vintage chiffon. Not necessarily the poofy prom dress kind (although I’m pretty cool with that, too), but the elegant, grecian, pleated kind that comes from the late 1950s and early 1960s. I managed to find a beautiful specimen in lipstick red last year, but it sold before I could get my claws into it. Since, I’ve been unable to find anything quite right, vintage or reproduction. That is, until Dita Von Teese came out with her “Follow Me” cocktail dress in silk chiffon.
Based on a vintage dress from Dita’s own collection, “Follow Me” has everything I love about the look: fine pleats, a light drape, and a shoulder sash! Originally, it was available in both lipstick red (omg!) and black, but by the time I got around to buying the red wasn’t available (later, we found some on sale in Australia, but…well…spilled milk and all that). Before I could get super-excited, however, there was the issue of price. This thing is expensive. Like, so expensive that even I have trouble typing the MSRP (which is – brace yourself – $540). Now, I’m not averse to dropping some coin on a really special piece. I’ve spent lots more on custom ensembles for special events and on high-end shoes. But for an off-the-rack cocktail dress? I wasn’t even about to try.
Until there was saletiem. I think it was a residual Black Friday sale at Dita.net. One of my friends was like, “Hey, looks like almost half-off all those beautiful Dita pieces!” So I fell on it. A couple of weeks later, my size 12 had arrived. Aside from coming up huge in the bodice, it was perfect. I was disappointed, but I couldn’t feel too bad; after all, there are pictures of Christina Hendricks of Mad Men fame wearing the same dress with the same apparent difficulty – a bodice that is too large.
I exchanged the dress for a 10, and it was…a smidge too small. End game? Luckily not. Jena at Dita.net was happy to re-exchange for the bigger size (no extra charge for shipping, either!), and I decided to have it altered. My friend and seamstress extraordinaire, Monica, was able to take in the bodice for a decent price and I was, once again, in business.
The bodice is very structured, which makes it less than a cakewalk to alter. Once it’s altered, though, the extra cost is worth it. I wear it over my period-correct Goddess GD689 longline bullet bra for authentic effect.
While I can’t find the dress on sale right now, it’s still available in black through Tatyana (where you can get the rest of the Dita Von Teese line, including the popular trenchcoats) and at Dita Von Teese’s official online shop at Dita.net. Both shops offer great service, but I give extra props to Jena at Dita.net for all of her special help.
Also, beware of fit issues. The dress is certainly well-made, but the measurements are not always as described on the size chart. The size 10 I tried seemed to fit the charted dimensions, but the 12 was much larger in the bust.
Photos of me: Photography, makeup, and hair by the fabulous Miss Missy Photography.