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    1967 "Yellow Pages" Paper Dress

    Appraised Value:

    $1,800 - $2,200

    Appraised on: July 29, 2006

    Appraised in: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

    Appraised by: Caroline Ashleigh

    Category: Rugs & Textiles

    Episode Info: Milwaukee, Hour 2 (#1118)

    Originally Aired: November 5, 2007

    slideshow IMAGE: 1 of 1  

    More Like This:

    Form: Dress
    Material: Paper
    Period / Style: 20th Century
    Value Range: $1,800 - $2,200

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    Appraisal Video: (0:00)


    Appraised By:

    Caroline Ashleigh
    Collectibles, Rugs & Textiles

    Appraisal Transcript:

    APPRAISER: What we're looking at is an American collectable, made famous from a "Mademoiselle" article in 1967 called "The Big Paper Craze." Now this, as you know, is an advertising piece, in the form of a dress, that was actually sent to people, free of charge in the late '60s. How did you come by this?

    GUEST: I've been a collector of vintage clothes, primarily from the mod and psychedelic eras since I was 12 years old. In 1966 I started. And, um... one day the lady that lived next door to me asked me if there was anything that I might be looking for that she could shed from her household, and I said that I collected vintage clothing from that period. And she says, "I think I have something that you may want, it's a paper dress." And she brought it out, and I looked at it and I said, "It's wonderful." And I've had it in my house ever since, on display on a hanger. And bless her for laying it on me.

    APPRAISER: People treasure these, and they're really, hugely collectible.

    GUEST: (chuckles)

    APPRAISER: The thing in the '60s that was interesting, as you probably remember, convenience was everything.

    GUEST: Correct.

    APPRAISER: Everybody loved the idea of a paper dress because if it was too long, you could just whip out a pair of scissors and make it short. If you got tired of wearing it, or if you got a stain on it, you could throw it away. So they were very disposable. They were made from about 96% cellulose, and a few percentage cotton, so that they were highly flammable. So the real death of the paper dress was because they were so flammable.

    GUEST: And everyone smoked back then.

    APPRAISER: And everybody smoked back then. So that was really a major drawback, but I'm sure you're interested to know how much this free dress in 1967 would be today.

    GUEST: Well, I've been collecting clothes for a long time and this is one item that has left me clueless. Yes, I would love to know.

    APPRAISER: Well, this dress today would auction probably between about $1,800 and $2,200.

    GUEST: My goodness.

    APPRAISER: Not bad.

    GUEST: Very nice. Well, it won't be worn while it's in my possession.

    APPRAISER: Excellent.

    GUEST: But it will be on display.

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