The dress below is another gift from one of my husband's parishioners. Bought in a San Francisco department store in 1952 for $250.00, this tea-length ice blue and eggshell tulle beauty was worn with a mini veil. Zippers from this era were metal and very visible. Sometimes installed into the left side of a garment rather than down the center back, it caused the left side to bulge in some cases. It has been hard to keep this dress restored as tulle over time falls to tatters with one touch. For that reason I use it as a display piece to remember Estelle who has passed on. I tried this dress on myself and believe me it is a gorgeous piece. Not me in the picture . . .
If you really love vintage and want to wear something authentic either on your wedding day or to some important event, be aware manufacturing techniques back then were different. The invisible zipper that simulates a flawless seam just didn't exist back then. In some dresses circa 30s-50s you'll find seams pinked (simply cut with pinking shears) or zig-zaged rather than lock-stitched. If you're a purest or plan on wearing your vintage find more than once, find an expert in restoration. Ideally, one who loves vintage will relish working on authentic pieces and share your vision.