A Dress of Beetle Wings

In 1888, when Ellen Terry played Lady Macbeth, she appeared on stage in a dress made of beetle wings. That dress has now been restored.

Ellen Terry as Lady Macbeth by John Singer Sargent

 
Terry was a famous actress in her day and a favored subject of pre-Raphaelite painters including her first husband, George Frederic Watts. Sir John Gielgud is her nephew.
 
The famous dress was decorated with more than a thousand iridescent jewel beetle wings. The jewel beetle sheds them naturally.
Terry wore the dress on many public occasions and it was considerably worn when the restoration team began their work two years ago.
 

Ellen Terry as Lady Macbeth

 

 
View the restored dress here.
 
 
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