Item description for Les Petites Dames de Mode: An Adventure in Design by John R. Burbidge & Elizabeth Ann Coleman...
For years, doll and costume enthusiasts alike have seized every opportunity to view the authentic period ensembles created by John Burgidge, former bridal designer for the prestigious Priscilla of Boston. Titled Les Petites Dames de Mode ("the little ladies of fashion"), this collection of Victorian and Edwardian gowns worn by 29-inch mannequins has been displayed in prominent museums throughout the country and was the subject of a video produced in the 1990s. Not until now has the entire collection been presented in print. Featuring full-page photos of each gown, with close-up views of important details, accompanied by the designer's extensive notes on the creation of each piece, this book will be appreciated and treasured by doll collectors, costume historians, clothing designers and fashion aficionados.
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More About John R. Burbidge & Elizabeth Ann Coleman
Burbidge graduated from the New England School of Art in 1948. That same year he joined the renowned bridal firm of Priscilla of Boston, for which he designed wedding gowns until he retired in 1988. In 1978 he began to work on his collection of Les Petites Dames de Mode, and has displayed his authentically costumed mannequins in museums all around the country. He is a member of the Costume Society of America, the Costume Society of England and the United Federaton of Doll Clubs.
John R. Burbidge currently resides in the state of Massachusetts. John R. Burbidge was born in 1922.
Reviews - What do customers think about Les Petites Dames de Mode: An Adventure in Design?
Les Petites Dames de Mode: An Adventure in Design Oct 10, 2007
This is a wonderful book. The photography shows every detail of the exquisite designs, which are breath-taking. The commentary is very interestsing and gives an insight into life in the 1800's according to the way women dressed. I would love to be able to wear any of the fabulous dresses shown.
Beautiful inspirations Jul 18, 2007
This book by Mr. Burbidge is a feast for the eyes. The book features dozens of 29-inch fashion dolls wearing costumes from the 1850s to around 1914. Being oversized dolls, each costume can have incredible detail. Mr. Burbidge has labored to create accurate period detail in each dress. Each doll is shown in a full-page picture with period hairstyles and accessories. Each accompanying page includes a description of the outfit, small inset pictures of close details, an interesting quote from historical sources about the time period and usually some tidbit about where the author found the material for the gown. Frequently the author will explain things about high society of the era and how certain items would be viewed - for instance, whether a gown would be considered racy because of its color or how young ladies didn't wear expensive jewelry with a gown until after they were married.
There are only 2 things that I found lacking about this book and they are really trivial items in my mind. The first is that the color of the full-page images is sometimes a bit "off". The dolls often feature very soft colors and the images have a warm tone that can wash them out. The inset detail shots usually have a better color representation.
The second is that the reader should not expect accurate period undergarments on the dolls. The crinolines and petticoats are fairly accurate, but there are no corsets shown.
All in all, the book is beautiful and informative. If you didn't know better, you would almost think the images were of full-size mannequins dressed in real period costumes. And the accompanying text is suitable for anyone, even if they have no knowledge of the eras shown.
An Error Bygone, Miniatures and Fabulous Tailoring Jun 12, 2007
If you're into miniatures, or just fabulous seamestry, you will love this book and this man's work with textiles, and fashion of a romantic era like none you've seen. These are fashions we will never see again in our society, (thank goodness - can't imagine wearing this stuff). But at the same time, I love to see how elegant and fabulous ladies looked in these garments. This man was responsible for making some of the most fabulous wedding gowns in our country for over a decade and now has preserved for us a fashion era that won't be brought back in it's entirety ever again. A must see for those that are into preserving a culture and miniatures.
A Very Special Book May 15, 2007
This book is a total delight for fans of couture, especially La Belle Epoch. Nothing will compare to seeing the exquisite Les Petites Dames in person, but this book comes close! I was fortunate enough to acquire some of these pictures when they were marketed in small groups, so I was thrilled to find that Mr. Burbidge had since expanded the collection and subsequently published it in its entirety (also the book goes into more detail). Just loved it!!
Book for inspiration May 12, 2007
I found this book very useful as a source for inspiration. Good quality pictures of very Victorian looking dresses. It is not a "how to" book, but if you have some experience in sewing, there you can find good ideas how it all must look then finished.