Wednesday, August 19, 2015

 THE CAPSHAW COLLECTION 5--Fiesta dresses, squaw dresses, Mexican and Spanish Fiesta Fashions....


It's that time of year again--time to update new additions for 2015 in preparation for Fiesta season in Santa Fe.......

 If you are hoping to see my usual troupe of young models, you will be disappointed to know that my two daughters who wear many of the fashions had very little time when they were home this year to pose, so it will mainly be me with some assistance from some generous friends and family. 
This gun-metal grey, two-piece raincloth fiesta/squaw dress is by Faye Creations, Patio Fashions, Tuscon, Arizona.  It is embellished with metallic silver ric-rac, braid and lace.  Because of the unusual color and unusual metallic lace, I give it a rating of **** (only the true fiesta/squaw dresses will be rated)
 YOUNGER THAN SPRINGTIME, and looking like a Mexican Calendar Girl, Bianca models this lovely black velvet skirt with a floral and matador motif  with a matching velvet tank and bolero.
Because the bolero jacket was not very clearly depicted in the photo above (and after much negotiation and gnashing of teeth), my Francesca agreed to model the bolero that I hand decorated with sequins and a cactus applique to match the matador skirt. The sombrero by Pigalle also features matching embroidery and matching sequins.
 Also in springtime, I am modeling a two-piece cotton raincloth squaw/fiesta dress with gold ric-rac and braid by Vera Kay, Hot Springs, Arkansas.  Because of the deep V top that is more generously cut--and therefore more comfortable than those from New Mexico patterns--I give this dress a rating of:  ****
 This cotton skirt just dripping in ric-rac has been shown before, but here it is shown with boots and a wool jacket with silver studs and crosses for a cooler weather look.
 Also, I was very pleased to find a top from another dress that matches the trim on the solitary skirt.  This now comprising a full fiesta/squaw dress, I give it a top rating of: ***** due to the awesome trim.

 Sisi models a hand-made cotton raincloth two-piece squaw/fiesta dress with silver ric-rac and turquoise braid trim with one of her own Pigalle velvet sombreros.
 I appreciate her allowing me to post this "Inquiring Photographer" shot showing that the smart Santa Fe woman who made this dress cured one of the curses of fiesta dressing (tops coming up and out of the skirts) by fashioning the top into a one-piece garment with the slip.  I like her ingenuity, but I would like more trim on the top.  Rating:  ***
 This is a very comfortable two-piece coral colored cotton raincloth two-piece fiesta/squaw dress with silver braid and trim.  (Jewelry, as in many photos courtesy of Flores/Kelly Ltd.) I love the color, but for lack of any real imagination, rating:  ***
 This black cotton raincloth squaw/fiesta two-piece dress has lots more silver ric-rac and braid.  As with all of the fiesta dresses in this post, it also has a full-circle, highly gathered skirt.  Rating: ****
 Now this is what the sophisticated younger set of Santa Fe may be sporting this Fiesta.  Zoila is wearing a soft coral highly pleated broomstick skirt and matching top by Double D Ranchwear. This is a more contemporary style that has emerged after the Fiesta/patio styles of the 40s, 50s, and early 60s faded away.
 Up close detailing of the silver studs and silver buttons on the blouse.
A fall back to the Spanish styles that are always popular for Fiesta.  Some of these outfits will be featured again in the Rancho de las Golondrinas Addendum to this inventory as they may be apropos in that setting as well.  This is a cotton ruffled Penelope and Monica Cruz skirt with a fantastic fringed wrap at the hip, worn with Spanish pieneta and gold filigree jewelry.
 Another singleton well pleated cotton skirt is teamed with a black peasant blouse and straw hat for casual summer wear.

 Julie models a Martin McRae Original western lace cowgirl shirt with fringe and a tight woven Mexican Charra hat by Sun Body Hats, Houston.
 This view shows some of the detail on the blouse--Martin McCrea is famous for his work with mixing laces.  The beaded hatband on the hat is also visible.
 Full Mexican peasant style China Poblana skirt with handmade cotton peasant blouse.
 Another more contemporary style synthetic silk set by Longhorn Western Ware.  Sisi is wearing it with the fringed "Fannie" wrap.
 A calico ribbon shirt by Bird Watcher, Santa Fe, New Mexico with hand made three-tiered broomstick cotton skirt
 Finally, a "skirt shot"--demonstrating the fullness of the old fiesta skirts.  Julie models a cotton raincloth fiesta skirt with lots of tiny copper ric-rac and copper braiding worn with a velvet top with copper sequin trim.
 Close up of the Thunderbird braiding.....

 Again, a Martin McCrea Original cotton silk blend dress made of various cotton laces, The dress is worn Spanish style with a Spanish pineta of Mother-of-pearl and a lace Spanish fan.
 Because the white-on-white laces don't show up in a regular shot, this back lit photo of the dress depicts the true beauty and artistry of working the various laces into one design.
 A cotton muslin  set from the 1970-80s by Just Lindee, Santa Fe, NM.  This peasant style two-piece outfit  features multi-colored trim and ric-rac and a three-tiered, but narrow full length skirt.  A Mexican woven belt and straw sombrero complete the outfit.
Our tiniest and most adorable model, Jocelyn, models a Chiapas embroidered skirt from Mexico with a fringed Spanish shawl.
 The view from behind depicts the intricate embroidery on the shawl, the black lacquer Spanish comb and the serene composure of the young beauty.  Jocelyn will be modeling more outfits in the CHAVEZ COLLECTION that will be posted next week.
This outfit was purchased from a seller who bought it off the wall in an old Mexican Restaurant in California. (Much like the motif at Tia Sophia's, here in Santa Fe, I guess.) The black velvet Mexican top is painted and festooned with sequins.  It is in pretty good shape, however the skirt also painted and festooned)  has several condition issues from being on the wall for so long.  It is a rather inappropriate length for a woman my age, and I was hoping that one of the younger models at Sisi's photo-shoot would volunteer to model it, but I guess it was just too homely for any takers.
A comely Cowboy Girl, Sisi models a well pleated three-tier synthetic silk broomstick skirt from Longhorn Western Ware and an embellished top from Sun Belt Denim.
A close up-illustrates the front placard pleating and the silver studs and buttons.  The silver belt is Sisi's and again, the Charra hat is employed.
 Ole! When I purchased this lovely soft coral handmade skirt with yards and yards of silk, I immediately thought of my Spanish Dancing days of yore, so for the photo, out came my trusty castanets.  I teamed it with a pleated and sequined silk top by Piano and a peasant shawl.  This Spanish look would be perfect for performing Spanish folk dances on the bandstand.  You might have noticed that my little Zsa Zsa turns up in many of the shots.  It is not just devotion to her mistress, she loves to chase light and reflections and when she spots the camera, she waits around for the flashes.

Striking a similar pose with my castanets and in a similar outfit on the Plaza--Fiesta 1959

 A TALE OF TWO FIESTA DRESSESS:  This homemade cotton raincloth two-piece fiesta/squaw dress in tomato red with silver and gold ric-rac and braid gets my top rating--for color, fit and pizazz.  This dress was probably made in the late 1950s or early 60s.*****
 This is her well-tailored but decidedly homelier cousin from decades later.  This two piece squaw/fiesta dress by Martha of Taos is made of cotton.  The lighter and more breathable "raincloth" cotton material seems to have disappeared from the fabric stores.  This dress may well have been made from the same pattern as the one above, but by this time the cost of metallic ric-rac and braid and the cost of labor to meticulously sew it on had made marketing of such items too astronomical for practicality.  Martha of Taos, who was famous for her Navajo velvet designs (one is posted in an earlier inventory), came up with a labor saving way to continue the fiesta tradition by sewing the trim only on the relatively straight surfaces of the outside of the sleeves and on a cloth belt for the waist.  Still pretty, but not so fancy. **
 Angelica is modeling a lovely violet Mexican crocheted ruffle blouse with a Navajo velvet skirt.
 Up close you can see the artistry of the lace--and the beauty of my glamorous niece.
 Here is a bluish-teal version modeled with a calico Navajo skirt with tiny blue ric-rac.
 No, that is not 1940s movie star, Carole Lombard, it is our own lovely Bess modeling the white version of this blouse worn with the Penelope and Monica Cruz skirt.
 Up close and personal with mother-of-pearl pineta added.

 My favorite of all the crocheted blouses, a sunshine yellow version (a gift from Sisi) worn over a western dress with red cowboy boots.  I can be a Cowboy Girl too.....
 Another Martin McCrea Original this time with patterns of burnt out velvet worn Spanish style with a pieneta and matching multi design lined shawl.
 Close up of beautiful butterfly silver filigree hair ornament from Mexico.
 At long last, a "Made in Old Santa Fe by Ganscraft" dress.  I bought this dress on Ebay from a vendor in Arizona and the dress came back home to Santa Fe just in time for inclusion in this year's edition.  It is a cotton raincloth two-piece squaw/fiesta dress with silver and white ric-rac and braid.  Gans dresses are always a treasure to get--my Grandpa Gomez was a career employee of Gans and every Fiesta, he would line up all the grandchildren and we would get a new squaw dress and a pair of new moccasins for Fiesta.  For the quality of tailoring (Annabelle's Mama might have sewed this one), the artistry and sentimental reasons, full rating:  *****

In a blatant attempt to get more young pretty models into the edition, here is our cousin, Beth in her similar black and silver dress that she inherited from her mother, Bettie.  Very classy!
The rest of the Mexican Café wall hangers---this one with Aztec designs in gold and silver paint and sequins.  If looking at this photo makes you crave enchiladas, maybe you have been to that very café.  Thus ends the Fiesta section.  Golondrinas section and links to the rest of the collection to follow
 In this Addendum, I am including outfits worn as a volunteer at El Rancho de las Golondrinas Living History Museum in La Cienega, NM.  While these outfits are not exactly "fiesta attire", they are attempts to re-create the colonial Spanish attire of 1700 through 1900 in New Mexico.  Like the outfit worn above in an attempt to re-create....

 The persona of my great, great grandmother, Maria Rita Baca y Delgado who was born on Golondrinas Ranch.

 From last fall--attire for the era reflected in the Mora House....

 Making apple cider at the Harvest Festival....
 Paisley vest with silver buttons in the Baca Placita...

 Interior of the Pino House--used as offices last fall, now a weaving facility...
Last day of 2014 season, elaborate braided skirt and wool jacket for the cool autumn weather....
 Layering of warm fabrics for early spring Colonial Days of 2015 season...
 Assignment of that day--assisting children on the grinding of corn on the assembled matates proved to be a very taxing endeavor....

 More detail of the Maria Rita outfit, this is a Civil War Re-enactment two-piece dress from "I Do Declare" complete with a hoop slip from the 1860-70 era.  I used cording to try to approximate the confradia vanguards from her photo and am wearing a vintage Third Order of St. Francis rosary, and other vintage jewelry. In the kitchen of the Baca House. (Josephina's kitchen)
 In the capilla, I re-dyed an outfit from last season to better approximate the colors of the 1800s.
On a warm day, cooler fabric attire with Tewa moccasins.....
 Close up of pineta comb and antique jewelry....

 Lavendar festival....
 In the school house, again with Tewas--also note period bag on door knob made from antique pillowcases.
China Poblana attire for Viva Mexico Festival.....
 Handmade 1890s silk and velvet skirt and top with marble buttons with Hoplessly Romantic re-creation hat with tulle back drape.  I was hoping for an assignment in the General Store.....
 Living it up at Summer Festival that features Old West gunslingers and outlaw shootouts....

 No, not a Harvey Girl--just a cotton apron over typical "mourning attire"--in the Golondrinas Placita....
LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRARIE meets BLESS ME, ULTIMA in the schoolhouse......I'm wearing a gingham with velvet trim dress that Sisi gave me, but could not resist the Spanish comb.
End of Golondrinas Addendum for this year.
To view  CAPSHAW FIESTA COLLECTION VI, follow the link below:


The 2015 update of THE CHAVEZ COLLECTION will be posted in about a week.  Links to previous versions included in earlier links to the CAPSHAW COLLECTION.

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