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Attire for a 1920s gala event   Off-Topic Chat

Started Sep-21 by JulietDeltaOscar (fixin2quilt); 837 views.

On my upcoming cruise, there will be a gala event with the theme of the 1920s on our "formal" night.  I never know what to wear to these things!  And you know what most of the women will be wearing - those sleeveless flapper dresses with the fringe and the long string of pearls and the headbands with the feathers and all, and those kind of low heels with straps most of the flappers wore.  For various reasons, including my age, bad feet, weight and figure - yikes! - I just don't think such an outfit would be appropriate for me.  So I have been pondering what other kind of outfit would be good for me.  Nothing too flamboyant; trying to keep it low-key and classy.  I have found a couple of ideas online; now all I have to do is get the outfit together.  I don't think that should be too difficult, as I am not looking for anything very fussy - just a few basic items that I might (or might not) add embellishments to later.  So, I've decided on these things to make me look something like an old dame (ha!) from the 1920s - and of course, not spend much money on any of it:

  • A pair of black palazzo pants.  (I already have a pair.)
  • A very basic "shell" top in black or some other coordinating color. (Ditto.)
  • I have found a nice knee-length "1920s" fringed shawl to go over it.  I also found a photo of a kimono-type jacket I like, made of black burned-out velvet.  (See photos at end of this post.)  But right now I am leaning toward the shawl.  I have also thought of something like a little kimono jacket in brocade, but I would have to actually make that myself.  I believe that Asian-inspired designs were popular during that era.  I'm going to the thrift stores soon, to see if I can find something I could use as is, or to alter for me.  This is about the time of year when they bring out all their "costume" stuff.  And they always have a lot of sparkly scarves.
  • A pair of comfortable flat shoes, which I will perhaps embellish with something shiny.  (See the photo of some shoes I found online that are about what I envision, but maybe with not quite so much bling.)  There might be some basic flats or slippers at the thrift store that I can use and embellish with some cheap costume jewelry.  I have lots of slippers, but I don't know if any of them would work.  Above all, the shoes must be comfortable.     
  • Because we will be at sea, and who knows what the weather and the waves will be like that evening, I will likely have my cane to steady me, so I am going to embellish that with some temporary rhinestones or something. I don't use my cane ALL the time, but I think it could be part of a great 1920s outfit.  


Any other ideas?  I may or may not wear something in my hair.  But I do NOT plan to carry one of those long cigarette holders.  Not trying to be Norma Desmond here.  LOL    And because I will have my cane, I would like to keep my other hand free.  



5dogmom (CRISR5)

From: 5dogmom (CRISR5)


I think I must live under my mother's influence, but I go for the all black look -- pants, kimono, sparkly shoes.  Just reread your post and challenged myself to fall in love with the shawl and save you the time and trouble of making the kimono.  With a sparkly necklace and dangly earrings I think you'll fit right in with the 1920s theme and not be a flapper at all -- just an elegant old dame vibe; you may have been part of the Gay 90s!

I admire you for getting a "look" together and attending the event!  I'd probably grab some fruit off the buffet and stay in my room.

Cris in MT


Thanks for your remarks.  I naturally tend to keep to myself most of the time, and in the past I would have stayed in my room too.  But I have been making myself try to be more outgoing, which I have done with some local quilters and scrapbookers.  (I am not a scrapbooker, but they let me bring my sewing and join them on crafting days at the library, and of course, I have joined the local quilting group.)  But mainly, I paid a lot for this cruise and it may be the last time I can afford it, and it's a short cruise at 5 nights, so I want to get full value for what I paid, and at least enjoy people watching at the event.  There are always many interesting costumes.  People are so creative!  

CC (ccase5)

From: CC (ccase5)


Yes, yes, yes to all things. They are all lovely and would fit right in. You will look spectacular!! enjoy yourself!!



Looks like you are on the right track!!  Asian theme I like, the shawl also looks good.

Also think about a headband kinda thing with some sparklies, they did that kind of thing back then.  I have been watching Downton Abbey from the beginning, they might have some ideas for simple headwear.

Have fun!!

I even ordered a pair of inexpensive reading glasses that I think look like they came from the 1920s.  LOL  And I have an antique fan that I might use.  But I did say that I wanted to keep one hand free.  I might have to fix up some kind of small bag I could wear around my neck for the fan and the glasses and my phone.  I'm thinking about the headband.  Shouldn't be to hard to fix up something with stuff from Dollar Tree.  haha  


From: bornblesse2


If you have basic black shoes, do you have some clip on earrings that could be clipped to shoes to decorate?

wonder if that would work.

i think you plan for dressing sounds terrific!

Maybe Carol Burnett could pull this off, but I don't think I could!  LOLOL  Look at the boobs!  That is fairly accurate.  Hah!  

For the shoes, yes, that's what I thought I might do.  Fun!