Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Long Gloves: Hide and Seek

I'm captivated by this image, a 1952 advertisement by Rene Gruau for Crecendoe Gloves, printed in fashion illustrator David Downton's wonderful journal, Pourquoi Pas?

Why have we stopped wearing gloves as a fashion accessory, apart from when temperatures dip? Their allure is twofold: they make the arm and hand into a calligraphic instrument of gesture and pose. Even more critically, they come off. Burlesque queens have forever played upon the seductive potential of drawing this garment from the fingers, hand, wrist, forearm. The message is there, implicitly, even while they're still on.

Elbow-length gloves are fantastic with sleeveless gowns and dresses, and they're so easy to find at vintage sources. Just be sure to know your glove size, and buy accordingly, because, like vintage shoes, they frequently run small.

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