Margaret Payson's Delphic-style gown, Portland, ca. 1938

Contributed by Maine Historical Society

Margaret Payson's Delphic-style gown, Portland, ca. 1938

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Renowned New York City fashion designer Jessie Franklin Turner designed Margaret Payson's late 1930s pleated crepe gown in a "Delphic" style. It's notable that Turner was experimenting with the relatively new fabric, rayon. The gown's "Delphic" style speaks to its Grecian silhouette, and pleated fabric popularized by designers like Fotuny.

This couture-caliber gown includes a designer label on the inside lower seam, which reads "Jessie Franklin Turner, 410 Park Avenue, New York." Turner ws located at this address between 1936 and 1942.

Portland socialite Margaret Payson (1888-1985) owned several Turner gowns, two of which are in a similar shade of celadon or pale green, possibly from the same Turner collection.

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About This Item

  • Title: Margaret Payson's Delphic-style gown, Portland, ca. 1938
  • Creator: Jessie Franklin Turner
  • Creation Date: circa 1938
  • Subject Date: circa 1938
  • Locations:
    • Portland, Cumberland County, ME
    • New York, Manhatten County, NY
  • Media: rayon, glass beads
  • Dimensions: 154.940 cm x 86.360 cm
  • Local Code: 1993.300.1184
  • Collection: Costume collection
  • Object Type: Physical Object

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For more information about this item, contact:

Maine Historical Society
485 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04101
(207) 774-1822 x230

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