“Glad you could make it for tea”

I  had some trouble looking up an exact definition of a tea dress.  Most sources seem to agree that the length is mid calf, and that it is generally flowy and feminine and pale or pastel in color.  According to Wikipedia, the term originated with dresses that women would wear at home for tea and dinner in the late 19th century.  They were seen as more intimate than a dinner dress which was designed for wearing out.  So while this dress may not be exactly a tea dress, I still like to think of it as one.  It’s light, feminine and floral, and seems like the perfect thing to wear while drinking tea on a sunny afternoon.  And my pretty little green cardigan made this outfit feel all the more springy.

I would love to have a closet-full of dresses like this for the summer.  The fabric is so nice and light, and the print is so pretty.  Too bad I have such a small closet 😉

What is your definition of a tea dress?  Do you like researching the history of fashion?

Dress: Jonathan Martin (via Classy Consignment)
Cardigan: J Crew (via eBay)
Sandals: Dansko Novalee (via eBay)
Necklace: Jorgensen Studio
Cuff: via Classy Consignment

Nail Polish: Essie Calypso

Quote: Don’t bump the glump, by Shel Silverstein

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About Diana

Style maven, knitter, crafter, seamstress, one who does not walk the beaten path.
This entry was posted in Outfits and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to “Glad you could make it for tea”

  1. Amy says:

    That’s a gorgeous tea dress, I love it with the green cardi too! I had a beautiful green silk one with a cherry blossom print, will have to hunt it out 😀

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  2. It’s a lovely dress, and you look absolutely marvelous in it!

    Well, my definition of a tea length dress is a dress that hits at the mid-calf. Being in weddings and planning a wedding will stamp that into a brain forever.

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  3. EvaNadine says:

    that necklace is perfect paired with this dress. 🙂
    .-= EvaNadine´s last blog ..Feeling a Little Stepford… =-.

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  4. Keely says:

    So pretty. I just love it! You look amazing in it.
    .-= Keely´s last blog ..Slouchy =-.

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  5. I’ll have to agree with LHdM on the tea-length dress definition, although I would tend to use a different term for a dress of the same length in a dark or somber fabric, or with a very tailored silhouette.

    As far as I know (and I could be mistaken – my area of concentration was dress of the 16th century, not 19th), grown women didn’t wear dresses that short until sometime in the early 20th century, except for athletic activities. A tea *gown,* on the other hand, is a loose dress in light, floaty materials, worn at home for tea; it is usually floor-length or even has a train. Your lovely little dress, while not fitting this strict historical definition, evokes the spirit of the garment quite nicely.

    …I was interested enough in fashion history to get a Master’s degree in the subject. It may have made me the tiniest bit pedantic – sorry!
    .-= fashiontheorist´s last blog ..Link-tastic! 23 April 2010 =-.

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  6. Kendra says:

    Another dress that looks gorgeous on you!! I love it!
    .-= Kendra´s last blog ..Happiness is. =-.

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  7. I wish I knew more about fashion history, since I love fashion and history separately. While I may not know the exact definition of a tea dress, I do know that you look lovely in this! The necklace is my favorite part- so delicate and feminine.
    .-= alltumbledown´s last blog ..Trying to Fit In =-.

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  8. Sally says:

    That necklace and dress were MEANT to be worn together!
    .-= Sally´s last blog ..Love This Body =-.

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  9. Helena says:

    Gorgeous dress! I have no opinion on whether it’s a tea dress or not, but it looks great on you. Very flattering and perfectly paired with the necklace.
    .-= Helena´s last blog ..Goals w. 17 =-.

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  10. Franca says:

    such a pretty dress! And thanks for defining tea dress for me, I never did know what that meant!
    .-= Franca´s last blog ..Blue flickr faves =-.

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  11. Kirafashion says:

    I am always crazy about your great cardis…

    all my kisses for you girl 🙂
    .-= Kirafashion´s last blog ..PRADA SHOES =-.

    Like

  12. Clare says:

    Oooh, springy and oh-so-perfect. I’ve been recently inspired to do research on the history of fashion, and have been regaling Joe with interesting (to me!) tidbits over breakfast.
    .-= Clare´s last blog ..Everyone Grows Old on the Gold Coast =-.

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  13. alisha says:

    Your spring looks are so beautiful,I like how your style is evolving you are becoming a great style inspiration.

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  14. alechia says:

    I have to agree with everyone else, the dress and necklace were made for each other. The cardigan looks great paired with the dress, and the dress is just so feminine and really flattering on you. You look rockin’!
    .-= alechia´s last blog ..The Cow Keeps Jumping Over the Moon =-.

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  15. Tony says:

    I am always crazy about your great cardis…

    all my kisses for you girl 🙂
    .-= Kirafashion´s last blog ..PRADA SHOES =-.

    Like

  16. Lorena says:

    What a beautiful set !
    I love that gorgeous necklace you are wearing, it is absolutely perfect.

    Like

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