Designed by
Valvo, Carmen Marc, American, born 1953
Worn by
Davis, Viola, American, born 1965
silk faille, silk chiffon, silk satin, synthetic tulle, glass beads, and metal fasteners
H x W x D (flat): 62 1/4 × 73 × 3 1/2 in. (158.1 × 185.4 × 8.9 cm)
This ivory silk faille gown with black beaded details designed by Carmen Marc Valvo was worn by Viola Davis to the 2015 Emmy Awards ceremony. The dress is sleeveless with a high, round neckline and a full, floor-length skirt. The bodice of the dress is fitted through the natural waistline through shaping, there is no waist seam. Hand-beaded embellishment using black bugle beads to form fern leaves is done in a wide band around the waist, with some leaves reaching up just below the bust line above the heaviest concentration of beading at the waist. Below the waist are smaller beaded embellishments of the same fern leaves in small clusters or leaves that appear to fall and float down the body of the skirt, with the lowest beaded elements approximately twelve (12) inches above the hem. The dress closes at the center back with an invisible ivory metal zipper and one (1) metal hook-and-eye above the zipper.
The dress is double-lined in ivory silk chiffon and ivory silk satin that is attached around all of the bodice seams, and extends with no waist seam to the hem of the skirt. The chiffon is also sewn into the center back seam of the skirt. Heavy white tulle, likely a custom addition and not original to the dress, is attached at the waist with loose basting stitches between the chiffon and satin linings. A black designer's label is sewn at the interior proper left back neck, with a size tag sewn to the bottom edge. Two (2) additional black tags with fiber content, care, and style information are sewn to the interior skirt proper left side seam of the satin lining fabric. A length of ivory thread that attaches to a small metal snap is sewn at each interior shoulder to keep bra straps in place.
Place used
Los Angeles, California, United States, North and Central America
Clothing and dress
Fashion design
Credit Line
Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Gift of Viola Davis
Object number
Restrictions & Rights
No Known Copyright Restrictions
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