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Gown picture - picture of grace kelly in gownA Ball gown is the female attire for social occasions where white tie is specified on the invitation. It is traditionally a full-skirted gown reaching at least to the ankles, made of luxurious fabric, delicately and exotically trimmed. Most versions are cut off the shoulder with decollete necklines. Such gowns are typically worn with a stole (a formal shawl in expensive fabric), "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 pined to the chest, and married women wear a tiara if 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, taffeta (Apparel Search note: visit our label definition page to learn about taffetta in regard to garment labels) and velvet with trimmings of lace, pearls, sequins, embroidery, ruffles and ruching.

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The above article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ball_gown ).  8/5/05

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