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  1. #1

    The Supremes worst gowns and wigs

    No I know we’ve talked about the girls looks many times before and their gowns. But I’m curious about what would be consider a fashion No no and a not so great looking wig. So I pose this question to the forum what was their worst outfits and worst wigs

  2. #2
    In the 70's there was a set of pink gowns that appeared short in front and long in back. I think MSC wore them on "Soul Train". Terrible.

  3. #3
    These are the dresses. Looks as though they are wearing pants underneath. I've seen pictures though of them just in the dresses.

    https://youtu.be/9NUdvCpZn5c

  4. #4
    Here's another set. I did love them on Jean, Mary, and Cindy.....but with this line up, they looked like a group of stuffed sausages. Mary and Cindy look like they both have a pooch. They had to have barely squeezed into them.....

    https://youtu.be/dO4DtAUSgyM

  5. #5
    The Supremes on Dinah! [[1975) - YouTube
    Not their most attractive attire.
    Last edited by lakeside; 03-01-2021 at 12:30 AM.

  6. #6
    To be fair, this was a few months after Mary had given birth to Turkessa and was in the process of losing the weight when they did Soul Train.
    Quote Originally Posted by marybrewster View Post
    Here's another set. I did love them on Jean, Mary, and Cindy.....but with this line up, they looked like a group of stuffed sausages. Mary and Cindy look like they both have a pooch. They had to have barely squeezed into them.....

    https://youtu.be/dO4DtAUSgyM

  7. #7
    My picks:

    DMF: the dresses from To Tell the Truth looked very plain to me also all 3 of them had on hideous wigs.

    DMC: the crush velvet pink pantsuits from Ed Sullivan. It looked like they went to a Rolling Stones garage sale and found these.

    wigs : Diana, that “natural “ from the first Love Child performance looked like a swim cap
    Mary , her wig from the closing number on GIT it looked like it had wings
    Cindy, the one wig she constantly wore from when she got there up thru 68 [[the
    Opening of TCB and many of the photo shoot pics)
    JMC: the raggity Anne brown pantsuit.

    wigs : Jean: that wig from the first skit on Flip Wilson

    JML: n/a but Jean did have some poor wig choices during this period.

    MSC: am mentioned in a previous post the dress/pants combo on Soul Train. It looked
    Better as dresses

  8. #8
    Actually if you’re talking the first appearance. I thought they looked relaxed and if I’m correct that was the first appearance after Mary had given birth.
    Quote Originally Posted by lakeside View Post
    The Supremes on Dinah! [[1975) - YouTube
    Not their most attractive attire.

  9. #9
    There's these gowns that DMF wore in 1965 a few times that were white with pink floral pattern on it. I always thought those looked pretty cheap. It reminded me of the Von Trapp children wearing clothes made out of curtains. And then that Copa period in 1965, the three of them wore short wigs that I don't think was flattering on any of them. It made them look a lot older than they were. Flo's wig on Andy Williams in '67 gave her the same "aged" appearance. Never was a fan of Diana's Love Child do either.

  10. #10
    Oh and I also never liked Mary's mullet from the Sound of Motown special.

  11. #11
    The prison-stripe dresses on the cover of GHV3, hands down. Name:  Diana_Ross_&_the_Supremes_-_Greatest_Hits_Vol._3.jpg
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  12. #12
    I've never really liked them black and white striped dressed either nor the ones they wore during the MSC and MSS years. As for wigs...never really take much notice of them lol. The love child one isn't very good and I do not like how Diana used it on the Cream of the crop LP. I love the ones Jean, Mary and Cindy used for the new ways LP photo sessions.

  13. #13
    I'll start with the 70s outfits

    the purple pantsuits - JMC wore these on Flip and then MSC wore on Soul Train. when JMC did Time To Break Down, Cindy looked giant in hers. but then when they sang We've Only Just Begun on that episode, they had removed the bolero jackets and they were MUCH better. Also this outfit included a macramé belt which helped somewhat to reduce the "poochiness" that this outfit could have

    the red Sullivan pantsuits - why yes, every woman wants a massive cummerbund with a HUGE belt buckle across their stomach and right under their tits

    jesus robes - they were ok on MSC but for MSS they just swallowed up Susaye. She looks like she's drowning in fabric

    the pink dress/pants - MSC wore on Soul Train. in Mary's gown book, she includes Pat's artist drawing and they look rather nice. but in reality they too bulky and amplify Cindy's larger figure and Mary's too. there are some pics of them wearing w/o the pants and it helps

    i'll also comment that during the Scherrie years, they had too many big chiffon ball gowns. like the green ones, the white/yellow/orange ones from Tonight Show, the pale blue ones from MSC, the pink ones in the gown exhibit for MSS but never worn. the gowns are attractive and all but not on trend for the time. These were the days of Halston and Diane von Furstenberg, wrap dresses, halters and Studio 54. Disco dancing required more form fitting outfits, sheer and lighter weight material. these cinderella dresses just swallowed up all their choreography

  14. #14
    and now for the 60s

    yellow Itching dress with chiffon "waterfall" - the outfits they wore on Sullivan for More and Itching. looked like something Lady Bird Johnson would be wearing

    pink chiffon My Fav Things - Flo looked massive in hers. a high Empire waistline is not as flattering for women with a more curvy and voluptuous build. when you have hips and sexy curves like she did, to start the waistline of the dress up at your bust, simply makes the chiffon cascade down even wider. it's similar to the false concept of wearing baggy clothes to hide weight. no - it just makes you look bigger and like a big pillow. Flo looked amazing in that cream sequin down with the diagonal stripes. sure she was bigger than Diana but it was a much more flattering design for her

    pinstripe Funny Girl gowns - these are just so plain and blah. the pinstripe is actually a line of white sequins but they just too plain and subtle for stagewear. the effect is lost in the distance from performer to audience

    TCB pantsuits - fortunately it seems they never wore these after the TV special. although seems the Tempts wore theirs

    mauve Shame dresses - i think these were Sullivan costume dept outfits, not actual gowns the girls wore elsewhere.

    Orange Hollywood palace pantsuits - again, Cindy looks huge in hers. mary is ok and diana looks rather flattering. Cindy looks like she has an ass the size of TX here. and again it's the cut. they're so tight at the hip and then flair to the feet. also the jacket hits right above the waist so it draws your eye to the butt

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    and now for the 60s

    yellow Itching dress with chiffon "waterfall" - the outfits they wore on Sullivan for More and Itching. looked like something Lady Bird Johnson would be wearing

    pink chiffon My Fav Things - Flo looked massive in hers. a high Empire waistline is not as flattering for women with a more curvy and voluptuous build. when you have hips and sexy curves like she did, to start the waistline of the dress up at your bust, simply makes the chiffon cascade down even wider. it's similar to the false concept of wearing baggy clothes to hide weight. no - it just makes you look bigger and like a big pillow. Flo looked amazing in that cream sequin down with the diagonal stripes. sure she was bigger than Diana but it was a much more flattering design for her

    pinstripe Funny Girl gowns - these are just so plain and blah. the pinstripe is actually a line of white sequins but they just too plain and subtle for stagewear. the effect is lost in the distance from performer to audience

    TCB pantsuits - fortunately it seems they never wore these after the TV special. although seems the Tempts wore theirs

    mauve Shame dresses - i think these were Sullivan costume dept outfits, not actual gowns the girls wore elsewhere.

    Orange Hollywood palace pantsuits - again, Cindy looks huge in hers. mary is ok and diana looks rather flattering. Cindy looks like she has an ass the size of TX here. and again it's the cut. they're so tight at the hip and then flair to the feet. also the jacket hits right above the waist so it draws your eye to the butt
    Sounds like you know your ladies fashion sup. Agree on all counts, particularly the orange pantsuits.

  16. #16
    mauve Shame dresses - i think these were Sullivan costume dept outfits, not actual gowns the girls wore elsewhere. Sup_fan those are the worst!! I forgot about them. I think they are so bad that I don't even want to remember them lol.

  17. #17
    and the initial post also asked for worst wigs. I don't have quite as many of those noted but thought i'd list a few

    Diana's little old afro wig - during late 68. it isn't about Diana sporting an afro. but this was such the pixie-est, tiniest one. especially when you had M and C wearing much larger hairstyles. i think she should have gone a bit larger. not a massive as during her Surrender photo shoot lol

    Mary's "bell shaped" wig - around the same time, Mary was wearing this odd bell-shaped wig. it's not the same wig she wore in the performance with Ethel, apparently just rehearsal. but there are other pics around this time of it

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    Mary's Cone shaped wig - Mike Douglas show with L and J

    Jean's grandma wig - on Model of the Year singing Touch.

    Lynda's afro - ok, this isn't a bad hairdo. but more about the fact that Lynda didn't change her hair style for about a year. she just kept sporting that same afro. she looked stunning but thought she could change things up a bit more

    Cindy's afro on Tom Jones - ok apparently i'm on a trend here lol. on Tom Jones, Cindy's afro looked messier than her gorgeous photo on New Ways. not sure if NW was a wig or her natural hair and same with TJ. i loved the larger curl look she had on NW. Especially with M and J afros in a more traditional, tighter curl.

  18. #18
    The cone Mary wore on Mike Douglas was an attachment not a wig I thought it looked good. I’m sure Cindy was wearing a wig on the cover of NW. The Afro she wore on Tom Jones looked thirsty and needed a drink. Also since Mary had given birth in April 1975 I’ll give her a some leeway in how her gowns looked since she was trying to loose the baby weight

  19. #19
    I just remembered the worst JMC look, the white turtleneck and vest look from Glen Campbell

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by blackguy69 View Post
    The cone Mary wore on Mike Douglas was an attachment not a wig I thought it looked good. I’m sure Cindy was wearing a wig on the cover of NW. The Afro she wore on Tom Jones looked thirsty and needed a drink. Also since Mary had given birth in April 1975 I’ll give her a some leeway in how her gowns looked since she was trying to loose the baby weight
    lolol you comment about Cindy on TJ had me literally laugh out loud. startled the dog here in my office asleep lolol

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    lolol you comment about Cindy on TJ had me literally laugh out loud. startled the dog here in my office asleep lolol
    yeah i get it that post preg that girls should be cut some slack. i don't disagree with that but at the same point, they had dozens of outfits and if some were not as flattering due to changes in the girls, then hang those up for a while


    same with their early gowns and the homemade ones. i didn't include those here. or ones that were really just of their time. fashion changes so thats ok

  22. #22
    I think Marybrewster mentioned these earlier. I'm not a huge fan of them when they wore them on their 1975 soultrain performance either. But Cindy looks GOOD in that dress on this photo. I'm gay so don't worry when I say that Cindy looked sexy. I think without them bottom parts the dresses look better.

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  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by TYK1986 View Post
    I think Marybrewster mentioned these earlier. I'm not a huge fan of them when they wore them on their 1975 soultrain performance either. But Cindy looks GOOD in that dress on this photo. I'm gay so don't worry when I say that Cindy looked sexy. I think without them bottom parts the dresses look better.

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    yes this was one that i was referring to also. they def look better here but still not marvelous. the odd tarzan top and the heavy pink crushed velvet pattern.

    here's a gorgeous Halston dress from 74. and think of the chic outfits diana wore in Mahogany. or the sexy outfits Bob Mackie did for cher and diana

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  24. #24
    I think someone once mentioned that it also depended on where they wore the dresses. The red short dresses they wore on the Sonny and Cher comedy hour for example. I don't like them but, that same person, said that they looked good when they wore them on a dark stage with lights shining on them. There is a photo of Scherrie wearing that dress and it looks good indeed.

    Also that last pic of them pink dresses. The side view, Scherrie on that photo, of them dresses look odd. Front view looks ok.

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by TYK1986 View Post
    I think someone once mentioned that it also depended on where they wore the dresses. The red short dresses they wore on the Sonny and Cher comedy hour for example. I don't like them but, that same person, said that they looked good when they wore them on a dark stage with lights shining on them. There is a photo of Scherrie wearing that dress and it looks good indeed.

    Also that last pic of them pink dresses. The side view, Scherrie on that photo, of them dresses look odd. Front view looks ok.
    and of course we're only seeing a static image of the dress in a photo from the 70s, most likely taken with an inexpensive personal camera without benefit of lighting and all. plus we're not seeing the movement of the clothing

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    yes this was one that i was referring to also. they def look better here but still not marvelous. the odd tarzan top and the heavy pink crushed velvet pattern.

    here's a gorgeous Halston dress from 74. and think of the chic outfits diana wore in Mahogany. or the sexy outfits Bob Mackie did for cher and diana

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    Those pink crushed velvet dresses from the MSC era are just... bad. They don't flatter any shape and they look very stiff--no soft movement. I keep looking at the pic above and trying to think of ways it could have been restyled/recut to improve the design and... it just isn't there. The most bizarre part is the large cut-out in the front. In this pic of Scherrie [[where, she doesn't appear to be moving so that has to be how the dress laid on the body), it just looks like someone took a pair of scissors to the gown. Pants, no pants, the gown is just poorly designed and was a wrong choice by the Girls.

    Grant, I love the other pix you shared--are both by Halston? Both would have been VERY contemporary for The Supremes and definitely an improvement...but I'm not sure the russet-colored wrap dress would have flattered all of the ladies [[MSC). Honestly, I look at that one and see Diana Ross. That said, the lavender halter-top gown below it would've been a very good choice for The Supremes circa 1974-75. The skirt still has enough fabric for movement [[something they obviously wanted--right or wrong--with their "ball gown" choices at that time), but still looks VERY sexy, blingy, and...70s Supreme.

    The one thing I think of with pointing out that The Supremes circa 1974-75-76 were not wearing truly contemporary designs is that, well, by that time, IMO, they weren't exactly attracting designers such as Halston or Bob Mackie [[sadly, nor could they probably have afforded them) to do their stage wear. The designers they were attracting weren't names and their taste was often questionable. I *wish* The Supremes in 1974-76 were able to wear Halston, Mackie, and von Furstenburg, but...[[and part of this is why I think they were still wearing and restyling the previous Supremes wardrobe) they just didn't have the money. Plus, the days were gone when a designer could trade on the idea of "I just designed a series of gowns FOR THE SUPREMES!" Plug in any other popular female group or artist at the time and it might have gotten more attention. Our beloved Supremes were not providing that name cache anymore by 1974-76.

  27. #27
    Your Wonderful Sweet Sweet Love, From Sonny and Cher, the pink and purple boas and gold dresses make them look "old style" and tired, compared with their dresses singing the same on the Flip Wilson show, which make them seem youthful and vibrant.

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by danman869 View Post
    Those pink crushed velvet dresses from the MSC era are just... bad. They don't flatter any shape and they look very stiff--no soft movement. I keep looking at the pic above and trying to think of ways it could have been restyled/recut to improve the design and... it just isn't there. The most bizarre part is the large cut-out in the front. In this pic of Scherrie [[where, she doesn't appear to be moving so that has to be how the dress laid on the body), it just looks like someone took a pair of scissors to the gown. Pants, no pants, the gown is just poorly designed and was a wrong choice by the Girls.

    Grant, I love the other pix you shared--are both by Halston? Both would have been VERY contemporary for The Supremes and definitely an improvement...but I'm not sure the russet-colored wrap dress would have flattered all of the ladies [[MSC). Honestly, I look at that one and see Diana Ross. That said, the lavender halter-top gown below it would've been a very good choice for The Supremes circa 1974-75. The skirt still has enough fabric for movement [[something they obviously wanted--right or wrong--with their "ball gown" choices at that time), but still looks VERY sexy, blingy, and...70s Supreme.

    The one thing I think of with pointing out that The Supremes circa 1974-75-76 were not wearing truly contemporary designs is that, well, by that time, IMO, they weren't exactly attracting designers such as Halston or Bob Mackie [[sadly, nor could they probably have afforded them) to do their stage wear. The designers they were attracting weren't names and their taste was often questionable. I *wish* The Supremes in 1974-76 were able to wear Halston, Mackie, and von Furstenburg, but...[[and part of this is why I think they were still wearing and restyling the previous Supremes wardrobe) they just didn't have the money. Plus, the days were gone when a designer could trade on the idea of "I just designed a series of gowns FOR THE SUPREMES!" Plug in any other popular female group or artist at the time and it might have gotten more attention. Our beloved Supremes were not providing that name cache anymore by 1974-76.
    yeah these are both Halstons. just the first few evening gowns i found online. the purple halter one would have been fierce on the girls!! the handful of gowns designed for the MSS lineup seems to be more on trend

    there are are bright orange gowns from Soul Train - which sort of echo this Halston halter top

    there was the tux outfit

    the blue and purple fringe from Udo

    the brown with various stripes from Soul Train

    agree about the image issue and all. the glory days were behind them so getting a top designer would have been too pricey. perhaps if Walking really had hit like it should/could of that would have brought them back to some level of national recognition. I also thought the girls broke up just a bit too early. they had started to re-establish themselves as disco queens. Studio 54 opened in 77 and had the girls been around, they might have gotten an appearance there. then perhaps they could have swung a design like Halston to maybe do something

  29. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by drlorne View Post
    Your Wonderful Sweet Sweet Love, From Sonny and Cher, the pink and purple boas and gold dresses make them look "old style" and tired, compared with their dresses singing the same on the Flip Wilson show, which make them seem youthful and vibrant.
    these aren't my fav gowns either. I don't care for the peach-y color base of the dress. without the feather wraps/jackets, they look a bit more sleek and stylish

    but yes! those mini dresses were amazing!!

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by sup_fan View Post
    these aren't my fav gowns either. I don't care for the peach-y color base of the dress. without the feather wraps/jackets, they look a bit more sleek and stylish

    but yes! those mini dresses were amazing!!
    I kind of liked those gowns WITHOUT the boa-jackets/wraps [[which made the outfits too Vegas-y for my taste) because they were rather low-cut and showed an impressive amount of skin. [[Gay guy here, folks--no interest in their boobs, but they [especially Lynda's] looked impressive in those gowns!) Sometimes it seemed like the taste level was off--sometimes for an entire ensemble and sometimes just for a single piece of it. In the '70s [[just like the '60s, of course), I preferred when they looked contemporary and sexy over re-using 60s ensembles which were not as overtly sexy.

    I liked those short white dresses with the long "tassels" [[not what they were, but I can't think of what else to call them at this moment!) because they showed plenty of leg and were sexy--contemporary. Compare this kind of plenty of leg with the crushed velvet pink numbers from 1974-75 that we've talked about. It worked on the white stretchy dresses with the long tassels... it didn't work with the heavy pink crushed velvet.

  31. #31
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    Here is a '60s Supremes gown that I just didn't think was very good. First, it looked off-the-rack [[which is probably still was in the Spring of 1965) and the whole lettuce-edge at the bust makes no sense with the weird "Egyptian-like" frieze at the bottom of the gowns. Speaking of what sequined nightmare at the bottom, it really looked like the girls had been doing after-school crafts with glue and cheap sequins. I know that The Girls were finding their style during the first part of 1965 when they were becoming bigger and bigger, getting more TV spots, and eventually landing the Copa and other "bigger and better club work all over the country," *G* and this meant that they were going to make some missteps, but... these gowns looked cheap. I don't know what color they were--ruby red with gold details?--but while the cut flattered them with the straight silhouette and the spaghetti straps [[and even that lettuce-edge at the bust), the design did not. These might have worked better had they had the detailing at the bottom removed. On black and white TV, however, these looked embarrassing.

  32. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by danman869 View Post
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    Here is a '60s Supremes gown that I just didn't think was very good. First, it looked off-the-rack [[which is probably still was in the Spring of 1965) and the whole lettuce-edge at the bust makes no sense with the weird "Egyptian-like" frieze at the bottom of the gowns. Speaking of what sequined nightmare at the bottom, it really looked like the girls had been doing after-school crafts with glue and cheap sequins. I know that The Girls were finding their style during the first part of 1965 when they were becoming bigger and bigger, getting more TV spots, and eventually landing the Copa and other "bigger and better club work all over the country," *G* and this meant that they were going to make some missteps, but... these gowns looked cheap. I don't know what color they were--ruby red with gold details?--but while the cut flattered them with the straight silhouette and the spaghetti straps [[and even that lettuce-edge at the bust), the design did not. These might have worked better had they had the detailing at the bottom removed. On black and white TV, however, these looked embarrassing.
    Dan - i'm revoking your gay card lol. What "rack" would ever have sold these?!?!?! these look home made. like a bad Home Ec project where the student was gluing on glitter and started at the bottom and only did that basic design before becoming bored lolol

    If a buyer had opted for these nightmares for their store, they should have been fired lol

  33. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by danman869 View Post
    I kind of liked those gowns WITHOUT the boa-jackets/wraps [[which made the outfits too Vegas-y for my taste) because they were rather low-cut and showed an impressive amount of skin. [[Gay guy here, folks--no interest in their boobs, but they [especially Lynda's] looked impressive in those gowns!) Sometimes it seemed like the taste level was off--sometimes for an entire ensemble and sometimes just for a single piece of it. In the '70s [[just like the '60s, of course), I preferred when they looked contemporary and sexy over re-using 60s ensembles which were not as overtly sexy.

    I liked those short white dresses with the long "tassels" [[not what they were, but I can't think of what else to call them at this moment!) because they showed plenty of leg and were sexy--contemporary. Compare this kind of plenty of leg with the crushed velvet pink numbers from 1974-75 that we've talked about. It worked on the white stretchy dresses with the long tassels... it didn't work with the heavy pink crushed velvet.
    the leather fringe on those mini dresses was hot as hell. super sexy. MJC also wore some killer hot pants and halter tops [[on the intro to Flip Wilson). it's certainly of the time and i think worked for them

    some of the pantsuits worked rather well too. the pink ones from Glen Campbell, the white fringe ones from Andy Williams, the green fringe from Tom Jones.

    I also like the look from the Floy Joy album. by 72, i think they could have done more with experimenting with less sequins, less matching outfits.

  34. #34
    worst overall wigs: the DMF short boy wig period late '65 - '67, and the JMC big stiff wigs from '70- '71
    Diana's [[exploding bomb?) wig on the Brussels '68 video
    Mary's GIT finale "Flipper", and long side/bangs blonde wig from early JMC days
    all Cindy's too mature GIT wigs...she may have over worn and favored that '68 TCB wig, but at least it suited her...
    Jean looks great with long hair...the Sullivan debut afro was so low and narrow cut front, it gave her a strange hairline appearance...yet on ST she had a total off the face short cut [[JML) that was attractive.

    Gowns? Worst:
    DMF: Pink Sullivan Favorite Things...Best: Blue Love is Here
    DMC...Sullivan finale batwings, Merman spot white, FG pinstripes, GIT black velvet...Best: TCB Green Swirl, Gold Spider Web, Black Forever Came Today
    JMC worst..Raggedy Anne
    MSC...worst Red SP White CB Black MW Vegas set

    they must have had a hard time finding anything that looked great on all 3 at anytime.
    Diana was super skinny,
    Flo had a bit of weight to hide towards her final year,
    Mary had long legs, and a short torso...in the DMC years at least 1 of the tight gowns scrunched around her middle, [[the white w/stripe that was one of the DMF last sets..also seen on Brussels show)
    Cindy, despite being larger many times had the best tight fit
    Jean had a small bust, and wider hips
    Lynda could make a dishrag look good...she really looked good in everything.
    Scherrie was petite, and often had a great fit...exception being the oversized stuff
    Susaye was so short she often looked like she was playing dress up in big girls clothes...she did look great in the verticle striped set...

  35. #35
    Let me share a bit more information about the "homemade looking" dresses the ladies wore on the Mike Douglas show appearance in November of 1965. The gowns are a beautiful, what I now personally call "Supremes Pink" since they evidently had a liking for pink gowns in the early days and bought others in a similar hue. They are almost the same color as the "Pink Bow" gowns Mary highlights in her book. They were designed by Eloise Curtis, who you might also be interested to know designed the gold lurex gowns the ladies wore for the "Sing Holland Dozier Holland" LP cover photo. The pink dresses are a beautiful high quality silk velvet and as you can see from the photos below, the beadwork and suspended crystals are certainly very nice quality and the work well done. I agree the mostly poor video footage we see of the performance today does not do them justice! They certainly were off the rack gowns, as were the "Sing HDH" gold gowns, but from what I understand they were not widely mass produced and were sold at a few high end stores at the time. Maybe these nice color photos will help you to appreciate them more!
    Darin

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  36. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by DWSheffer View Post
    Let me share a bit more information about the "homemade looking" dresses the ladies wore on the Mike Douglas show appearance in November of 1965. The gowns are a beautiful, what I now personally call "Supremes Pink" since they evidently had a liking for pink gowns in the early days and bought others in a similar hue. They are almost the same color as the "Pink Bow" gowns Mary highlights in her book. They were designed by Eloise Curtis, who you might also be interested to know designed the gold lurex gowns the ladies wore for the "Sing Holland Dozier Holland" LP cover photo. The pink dresses are a beautiful high quality silk velvet and as you can see from the photos below, the beadwork and suspended crystals are certainly very nice quality and the work well done. I agree the mostly poor video footage we see of the performance today does not do them justice! They certainly were off the rack gowns, as were the "Sing HDH" gold gowns, but from what I understand they were not widely mass produced and were sold at a few high end stores at the time. Maybe these nice color photos will help you to appreciate them more!
    Darin

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    Darin! THANK YOU! See, this is the kind of thing that can change an attitude about a look when you see them up close or actually worn. On that muddy, black and white footage from "The Mike Douglas Show" they look very, very different! I would've sworn it was just something sparkly [[like sequins or--eek!--glitter) making that pattern along the bottom of the gowns. Who knew it was intricate beadwork?! Seeing the real dress in these up-close photos, they're very feminine--that bright pink [[almost magenta) and the soft bows with the beading of an almost vine of flowers... it's really a different kind of dress and you've changed my opinion on these! Are they my favorite gowns? No, but they definitely have improved in my opinion. I wish that somehow the girls could have done pro photo sessions with every gown they wore so we could SEE them ON their bodies and know what they looked like and maybe understand why they picked them.

  37. #37
    Darin, thanks for the pics of the pink dress from the Mike Douglas Show. What a nice surprise! It would be great if color pictures from this performance were to surface.

    It's a shame that many of the iconic pictures from the DMF era are in B&W. Even if the formal poses were not in color it would be nice to see a performance shot or informal pose in color.

    I had wished Supreme Glamour had a few more pictures of the style of dresses that the group wore around 1965 and 1966, when it seemed that the girls were on TV almost every week. I always felt that those early dresses were similar to what a high school girl might wear to a school prom. I think it helped teenagers identify with The Supremes during this time.

    Later dress styles such as those worn on the Sullivan show for Itching and My Favorite Things were more mother-of-the bride in design. More formal in appearance than earlier dresses but more appropriate for a charity ball or other society event.
    Last edited by johnjeb; 03-02-2021 at 10:54 PM.

  38. #38
    yes these images DEFINITELY help. although i wonder about the color. while these types of gowns the girls were buying from Saks and other high-end stores were definitely more limited in their availability, they did often come in 2 or 3 patterns/colors to allow for greater appeal to women. one shade might not look attractive on all women or skin types. the B&W footage makes these gowns look much darker than this hot pink. i wonder if there was another color or two - maybe an emerald green or a deep blue. just speculating

    Johnjeb - you bring up a great point and that's the growing sophistication in the group. obviously prior to Where the girls were wearing attractive but relatively simple homemade or inexpensive store-bought costumes. frankly not wildly different from what other girl groups wore

    as we progress in 64 and earlier 65, success gave them the opportunity to spend more on clothes. D and M both admit to being clotheshorses and i'd guess Flo was too. what a thrilling opportunity to live out your fantasy of being able to buy the fancy and more expensive "prom dresses."

    2nd half of 65 saw them appear at the Copa and Lincoln Center. Now is when they upped their style to the "mother of the bride" look. But there's still a degree of "playing dress up" here. the girls were young, barely a little of a year into their success and so they seem to adopt the existing definitions of glamour.

    but by later 66, it was pretty clear that the Supremes were not a fad or flash in the pan. they were established and obvious successes and could now begin to redefine what fashion was and how it looked. This is where we get the designer gowns, the heavy sequins , the more over the top wigs and styles. When money isn't an issue and you've accepted the idea that you no longer have to prove yourself, you can let your creativity run

  39. #39
    speaking of different images helping with a look, here's another shot of those pink MSC gowns. And somewhere i thought i remembered a sketch from the designer. i looked in the Gown book and then in that magazine Mary published a couple years back. but can't find the image. the gown book has a few of Mike Travis' sketches but these were Pat Compano designs. anyway, if i remember right, the sketch definitely looked more attractive than what we actually got. the problem might be the material. in the sketch, things had a much more airy appearance. and if these had been made of silk or something not so heavy and bulky, perhaps [[and maybe just perhaps) the look could have been more successful.

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  40. #40
    Happy to share the photos with the forum.....it certainly is a special piece in my Motown collection. I figured if the finer details of the dress were shown it might help might make the case for them that they're much prettier than the footage shows!
    Darin

  41. #41
    it's interesting that no one has brought up the Copa gowns with the flowers. while def not my favorite, i don't hate the outfits. but i get it that the girls didn't like them. and those fluttering feathers up on your neck and around your face would certainly be distracting while performing live on stage

  42. #42
    i ran across this picture of the original look for the green gowns MSC wore. you can more clearly identify the "snakeskin" approach here. the bodice definitely shows that off and look at the cuffs Mary had!!

    if you look closely you can see some of the snake wrapping around Scherrie's neck

    also the skirts are just plain chiffon. later sequins were sown in

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