Antique & Vintage Dress Gallery
#9939 - c. 1906/07 RARE Parisian Fabulous Ermine and Lace Coat! With the Photo of the Original Owner (Willie Mae Thompson Norfleet) Wearing the Coat! Wearable Size! This coat comes directly from the descendants of the woman in the photo.... the coat was stored for all these years in the homestead and remains in surprisingly Excellent condition!! There are only a few issues to speak of... other than the missing crocheted button on the front (big deal)... there is one spot on the lace on the lower back of the coat, and the inner barely seen silk is shattering behind the lace at the hemline (see photos). The silk lining is in great condition (see photos), but the extremely delicate pleating chiffon trim (which hardly ever survives!) was taped together. NOTE: The coat was not meant to be worn full-length, but rather to about 7/8 length over a gown, so imagine a gown peeking out the bottom. Until the 20th Century, ermine was reserved for royalty in Western Europe seen on the coronation robes of royal and noble persons. It symbolized purity, valor, justice and dignity. After that, only the most wealthy could afford something this luxurious!! This coat comes with the original image of Willie Mae wearing the coat, and a typed 7-page family diary from 1894-1904 which describes the constant trips to Europe and Paris... and even times when they stayed with Royalty, and Willie Mae's sister Ada's address in NYC which was the prestigious Central Park West. I'm attributing the coat as a Parisian Designer Coat as it's nearly an absolute match to the Parisian jacket I have listed below! And I know this family bought most of their clothing from Paris.
SOLD - but on display in Museum Category for Research/Study