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Catalog Data

Designed by:
Judy Dearing, American, 1940 - 1995  Search this
Worn by:
Risë Collins  Search this
Subject of:
Black Fashion Museum, American, 1979 - 2007  Search this
Ntozake Shange, American, 1948 - 2018  Search this
synthetic satin and crepe with metal closures
H x W x D (On form): 40 3/4 × 17 × 14 1/2 in. (103.5 × 43.2 × 36.8 cm)
Place used:
New York City, Manhattan County, New York, United States, North and Central America
Sleeveless dress costume for the character Lady in Purple from the original Broadway production of Ntozake Shange's choreopoem "for colored girls who have considered suicide / when the rainbow is enuf." The dress is made from purple satin synthetic fabric with the crepe finished wrong side facing. The bodice has a sweetheart neckline, scooped back, and front shaping with princess darts, ending at the natural waistline. The neckline and armholes are edged with the purple satin, with the shiny satin side facing. There is a length of self-fabric piping around the waist, again with the shiny satin side facing. The full circle skirt falls at the knee and is hemmed with a chain stitch in purple thread that is covered with serged stitching in pink thread. The dress closes at the center back with a metal zipper, with two (2) small metal hook-and-eye fasteners, one at the top of the back and the second at the waist. There is a length of cream grosgrain ribbon sewn to the interior proper right and left back waist with a single metal hook-and-eye closure on the ends of the ribbon. The bodice is lined with purple synthetic satin, while the skirt is not lined. There are two (2) male metal snaps, one at each front armhole interior, sewn over the seam of the bust dart; there is no evidence of the corresponding female sides of these snaps.
African American  Search this
Actors  Search this
Broadway Theatre  Search this
Clothing and dress  Search this
Costume  Search this
Costume design  Search this
Design  Search this
Poetry  Search this
Women  Search this
Credit Line:
Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Gift of the Black Fashion Museum founded by Lois K. Alexander-Lane
Object number:
Restrictions & Rights:
No Known Copyright Restrictions
Proper usage is the responsibility of the user.
See more items in:
National Museum of African American History and Culture Collection
Collection title:
Black Fashion Museum Collection
Data Source:
National Museum of African American History and Culture