Court Presentation Ensemble
Presentation at the Court of Saint James’s was a momentous social accomplishment for many women. The Boué Soeurs costume, which was worn by Mrs.George Henry O’Neil, the former Bertha Fadelhan Drake, for presentation before George V in June 1928, has a train, headdress, and fan, all made to conform to the dress rules that governed the occasion at the time. The train is detachable so that the dress could quite easily be worn for dancing after the court ceremonies had concluded. Though the robe de style silhouette, with its structural panniers, is reminiscent of the eighteenth century, the dress’s body-obliterating shape and light, translucent layers reveal its twentieth-century origins
Photograph of Mahmoud Reda and Farida Fahmy.