We are in the process of making David's white tie vest which is made of piqué. As a vintage seamstress, this is a fabric type that I always see on the back of 1930's and 1940's patterns but not one I had worked with before. Piqué, or marcella as it is also called, is a fabric that is characterized by raised weave (looks like fine ribbing or little squares). It's synonymous with white tie and is (usually) the only fabric used for a white tie vest and tie.
I love this fabric and can see why all the fashionable ladies' collars and cuffs and gentlemen's white tie garments are made from it. Can you imagine something made completely in piqué? I came across these delicious photos in the June 1955 issue of Vogue that caught my eye:
White pique--pure fit from the high square neckline to the firm line of the skirt. To wear? Dancing the Merengue any evening; or, with a little cardigan, at the Jazz Festival at Newport (July 15, 16 and 17). Dress by Harvey Berin, $70 Saks Fifth Avenue.
Pristine against an even faintly gilded skin--white pique, lightly-waisted, laced at the hip with more of the same. To wear: dancing aboard the S.S. 'United States' on her 66th crossing, June 10; or listening to 'Heart' on a terrace in Maine. Dress by Pat Premo, $40 at Bergdorf Goodman.I love these dresses and can see how piqué would be a fantastic fabric to use to make a dress. I don't know, however, if I could wear something all white. Have you ever worked with piqué?