- Ball gown
A ball gown is the most formal female attire for social occasions. According to rules of
etiquette, a ball gown must be worn where " white tie" or "evening dress" is specified on the invitation. It is traditionally a full-skirted gownreaching at least to the ankles, made of luxurious fabric, delicately and exotically trimmed. Most versions are cut off the shoulder with decolletenecklines. Such gowns are typically worn with a stole (a formal shawl in expensive fabric), capeor cloakin lieu of a coat, "good" (couture or vintage) jewellery and opera-length gloves. Standard accessories are dancing shoes and a clutch style evening bag. Where " state decorations" are to be worn, they are on a bow pinned to the chest, and married women wear a tiaraif they have one.
The ball-gown shape has changed little since the mid-19th century. Although man-made fabrics are now sometimes used, the most common fabrics are
satin, silk, taffetaand velvetwith trimmings of lace, pearls, sequins, embroidery, ruffles and ruching.
The elements of ladies' white tie attire
According to rules of
etiquetteand attire, ladies must wear a ball gown to events where men are required to wear white tieattire.
The elements of ladies' white tie attire could include:
*ball gown - ballerina (to the ankle) or full-length (to the floor)
shoes - formal pumps, sandals or ballet slippers
jewellery- earringsand necklace; rings and bracelets are optional. A watchis not considered appropriate except for jewelled versions in which the face is covered so that it resembles a bracelet.
gloves - if worn, should be opera length
capeor cloak, or an opera coat
handbag- clutch style or small evening bag
state decorations - if specified on invitation; worn on a bow pinned to the chest
For their debuts, debutantes wear long white ball gowns. They also wear long white leather gloves that go well above the elbow and that close with small pearl buttons at the wrist. Their jewellery is understated and suitable for a young lady about to be formally presented to society for the first time.
* [http://collections.tepapa.govt.nz/search.aspx?__VIEWSTATE=%2FwEPDwUKMTAwNTY3MzM4MGRk2VIBUl0c8JJ0OrrEMBcNzXoTvg8%3D&term=ball+dress Ball gowns in the collection of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa]
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Look at other dictionaries:
ball|gown — «BL GOWN», noun. a gown suitable for a ball; evening gown … Useful english dictionary
ball-gown — ballˈ gown noun • • • Main Entry: ↑ball … Useful english dictionary
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ball gown — noun the most formal gown; worn to a ball • Hypernyms: ↑gown … Useful english dictionary
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Gown — A gown (medieval Latin gunna ) is a (usually) loose outer garment from knee to full length worn by men and women in Europe from the early Middle Ages to the seventeenth century (and continuing today in certain professions); later, gown was… … Wikipedia
gown */ — UK [ɡaʊn] / US noun [countable] Word forms gown : singular gown plural gowns 1) a) a special long dress worn by a woman, often for dancing or other special occasions a ball gown a white wedding gown b) a long dress worn by a woman in the past… … English dictionary
gown — [[t]ga͟ʊn[/t]] gowns 1) N COUNT A gown is a dress, usually a long dress, which women wear on formal occasions. The new ball gown was a great success. ...wedding gowns. 2) N COUNT A gown is a loose black garment worn on formal occasions by people… … English dictionary