ARCHIVE - Rare 1940s Ballerina Novelty Print Rayon Tea Dress

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This beautiful vintage 1940s tea dress has a rare and unusual ballerina novelty print. The lightweight rayon fabric is predominantly navy, depicting bouquets of flowers in pink, blue yellow and green interspersed with tiny ballerina figures. The simple shift cut is synched at the waist and has a generous calf length skirt with flurry of fabric gathered below an embroidered band at the centre reverse. The short batwing sleeves are playfully capped with an upturned cuff . A simple round neckline rests above a sheer window of navy chiffon which sits beautifully atop of the breastbone. This integrates into the fabric of the bodice with an irregular zig zag embroidered seam, framing the line of the bust to flattering effect. There are wing shaped folds of fabric like lapels stitched atop of each breast with an upwards curve towards the shoulders which at first glance give the appearance of a separate caplet. This lovely unlabelled piece would best suit US size 6-8, UK size 10-12. In very good to excellent vintage condition for something of this age with some well executed small repairs in a desirable and rare print.


BUST - 36 in. (91.44 cm)
WAIST - 28 in. (71.12 cm)
HIP - 38 in. (96.52 cm)
LENGTH - 43 in. (109.22 cm)

Pickup currently unavailable at CIRCA VINTAGE


Will you set anything aside for me before I come?

We are happy to find anything you may be interested in from our website - please let us know a week in advance. 

We also have an extensive offline collection. If you let us know your size, style, favourite colour to wear and perhaps your budget, we can browse through our archive in advance of your appointment. 

Do I need to bring anything with me?

Clients may wish to bring modern shapewear when trying on garments from certain eras, especially the 1950s. Vintage clothing was often worn with undergarments that shaped the waist and as such is tailored for them.

We have a huge variety of slip dresses and petticoats to complete your look; many of which are also for sale.

You may also wish to bring your favourite footwear. We often find a classic pair of nude shoes work well when trying on, or a pair in gold or silver.

Do you have a price range?

Many of our lower-priced pieces (under £150) are not available to buy online. Our prices range from £80 - £600 for separates. Dresses start at around £150 and go up to £2,500 for the very best antique pieces and designer vintage. Our bridalwear ranges from £300 - £3,000.

Can I bring anyone with me?

Yes but please do let us know the size of your party in advance.

Where can I get alterations?

We offer some alterations in house. Should you need alterations we cannot provide, we can refer you to one of our tried and trusted tailors.

Do you have an after-care service?

We will advise you on the best way to clean and preserve your vintage pieces and can also recommend trusted local dry cleaners.

Can I cancel my appointment?

You are free to cancel but please do give us as much notice as possible. If you cancel less than 24 hours before your appointment, you will be invoiced a late cancellation fee of £25.

Where's the showroom?

Our address is Circa Vintage, 87A Lansdowne Way London SW8 2PB

Upon arrival, buzz the 87A button on the gate or call us 020 7736 5038 to let you in.

Do you have parking?

We offer free, secure, off-street parking but it is a tight squeeze – so do let us know in advance if you will be needing this and we can make sure that there is space available.

How do I get there by public transport?


Stockwell (7 min walk) - Northern and Victoria Lines

Nine Elms (9 min walk) – Northern Line


Wandsworth Road (13 min walk) – Westbound to Clapham Junction / Eastbound to Dalston Junction

What payment methods do you accept?

Cash, credit/debit card, bank transfer, contactless, Paypal