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Vintage dress sketches unveiled by John Lewis


John Lewis has unveiled a series of archive sketches from its 1953 dress collection to celebrate the Coronation Festival this weekend.

ABOVE: The 1953 'Kay' and 'Monica' archive designs

The department store has recreated the four vintage dresses to appear on the Coronation Festival Catwalk, celebrating the best of British fashion over the last 60 years, at Buckingham Palace tomorrow.

The catwalk has four themes - vintage picnic, reinvention, best of British and diamonds and pearls - and features companies that have been awarded the Royal Warrant of Appointment, including John Lewis Oxford Street.

Jo Hooper, head of buying for womenswear at John Lewis, said: "As a Royal Warrant holder, it’s an honour to showcase John Lewis fashion at the Coronation Festival catwalk.

"To celebrate John Lewis’ rich heritage, we chose to search the archives for prints and patterns from the year of the Queen’s Coronation and recreated four exclusive dresses, which will sit beautifully alongside designs from the present day."

LEFT: The 'Audrey' dress from the 1953 John Lewis collection

As well as dresses from its 1953 archives, John Lewis will also be showcasing designs from its Somerset by Alice Temperley collection.

Two exclusive pieces from the capsule have been created for the Coronation Festival catwalk; a suitably royal Balmoral tartan cape and trousers - pictured below.

The Queen wore a white satin coronation dress with seed pearls and crystals by fashion designer Sir Norman Hartnell as she was crowned at her coronation ceremony in Westminster Abbey in 1953.

The gown featured emblems of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth embroidered in gold and silver thread and took eight months to make. The Queen reportedly described it as "glorious" the first time she saw it.

No doubt her appreciation of fashion at the Buckingham Palace catwalk tomorrow, 60 years on from taking her oath, will be just as rapturous.

RIGHT: The 'Sylvia' dress, one of four that have been recreated for the Coronation Festival

ABOVE: Balmoral tartan cape and trousers from the John Lewis Somerset by Alice Temperley collection, designed exclusively for the Coronation Festival

For those who cannot make the festival, all archive dresses will be on display in the windows of John Lewis Oxford Street until 19 July


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