Edith Russell

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Andrew Pascale

Member
Does anyone know if the dress Edith wore off Titanic is in a museum or something? If so has any seen what the dress may have looked like in real life?

Andy
 
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Randy Bryan Bigham

Member
Andy:

No, the dress Edith wore off the ship is not in a museum. Unfortunately the suitcase it was in, when she returned from her last trip to the USA in 1953 (to attend the premier of the movie Titanic), was mishandled and lost.

However, the photo above shows what it looked like and she also described it over the years in interviews, including one with John Maxtone Graham in the early 1970s. She said it was brown.

In most of her articles, Edith refers to the outfit she wore as a "hobble skirt," whereas it was actually a dress, although the skirt was of the "hobble" variety, meaning it was tapered. It was not a classic "hobble" or ‘sheath" skirt but one of the newer versions, being draped and gathered.

The picture shows that Edith’s dress consisted of a tunic (or overdress) of taffeta, trimmed in lace, ribbon and ornamental buttons, and a skirt of cloth or light wool that is draped up on one side. The hem of the skirt isn’t visible in the picture but it would have reached to the instep or ankle. This type of costume, blending a rich material and a simpler one, was all the rage in 1912, especially in the collections of Paris designers Bernard and Paquin. Edith was bringing over quite a bit of merchandise from these two couturiers, so the dress was probably made by one or the other.

Randy
 
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Andrew Pascale

Member
Hello, again. I have another question about Edith to ask y'all (i can't help it. she so fascinating). I'm trying to draw a picture of Edith. I have her face drawn, but that's it. Does anybody have any suggestions to what she may be doing in the picture? I want to have her doing something while on Titanic. Also, if u have any suggestions to what she might be wearing in the picture, it would help a lot. Any type of suggestions or inspirations will be a great help.

Thanks
Andy
 
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Randy Bryan Bigham

Member
Andy:

Edith wrote some letters in the reading and writing room before going to bed on April 14. She was still wearing her white evening dress from dinner that night. She also, earlier that evening, had been among the passengers on deck watching the sun set; she said the sky and the sea-spray were a blaze of colors. She was wearing the same outfit that she was saved in.

Best of luck on your drawing, and be sure to share it with us later; maybe you can do a series of pictures of passengers and crew and submit them to ET as part of a story or commentary.

If you want further inspiration, you might want to buy the book "Pig on Titanic," a very nice children’s picture book that’s not too expensive and should be available at most big bookstores. Here’s a link to Amazon.com’s listing for the book:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0060523050/qid=1127688035/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/102-5321994-4344910?v=glance&s=books

Best wishes,
Randy
 
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caroline herzfeld

Member
randy--thanks for the link to the photos. it's really kind of amazing to think of more or less contemporary people wearing those amazing clothes. Not the kind of thing that's easy to maneuver in a ship sinking.
 
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Andrew Pascale

Member
Thanks Randy. i would like to make Edith the focal point of my picture, but does anyone have any ideas of who could be in the background, and what they could be doing. Any suggestions would help me draw a great picture.

Andy
 
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Trevor Rommelley

Guest
I've seen a YouTube interview with Edith Russell in which she mentions going back to her cabin to lock her 19 trunks because she didn't trust the stewards to do it for her. But there surely wasn't enough room in her cabin for 19 trunks!?
 
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Trevor Rommelley

Guest
Thanks Kat! I've never seen mention of a second cabin, but it would make sense I suppose.

I'd be interested to learn the contents of the letter to Walter Lord too!
 
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Kat Komorowski

Member
No problem!
Happy


So would I as a matter of fact, but I don't think it's been published online, unfortunately.
 
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Ashlene

Member
Edith describes women’s clothes during the Titanic trip in several articles and interviews. Does anyone have a copy of these or know where I can get them?
 
Michael H. Standart

Michael H. Standart

Member
Ashlene, please note that the message board rules (See https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/admin.php?angle=Rules ) require the use of both your real first and last name. Please revise your profile accordingly. Thank you in advance for your co-operation.

Regarding your question, you would likely have to search some newspaper morgues to find what you're looking for and a lot of them are not available on line.

You may find some of the depostions taken in the course of the American Limitation of Liability hearings to be of some interest though none from Edith appear to be available. See http://www.titanicinquiry.org/lol/claims/claims.php
 
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