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  • Writer's pictureSelena | Beauty's Library

A Dress of Violet Taffeta Review

A Dress of Violet Taffeta gives us a story of a strong determined woman who decides to take control of her life...

Rating: 5/5

A sumptuous novel based on the fascinating true story of Belle Epoque icon Lucy, Lady Duff Gordon, a woman determined to shatter the boundaries of the fashion world and support herself and her young daughter with her magnificent designs.

Lucy Duff Gordon knows she is talented. She sees color, light, fabric, and texture in ways few other people do. But is the world ready for her? A world dominated by men who would try to control her and use her art for their own gain?

After being deserted by her wealthy husband, Lucy is desperate to survive. She turns to her one true talent to make a living. As a little girl, the dresses she made for her dolls were the envy of her group of playmates. Now, she uses her courageous innovations in Belle Époque fashion to support her own little girl. Lucile knows it is an uphill battle, and a single woman is not supposed to succeed on her own, but she refuses to give up. She will claim her place in the fashion world; failure simply is not an option.

Then, on a frigid night in 1912, Lucy’s life changes once more, when she becomes one of 706 people to survive the sinking of the Titanic. She could never have imagined the effects the disaster would have on her career, her marriage to her second husband, and her legacy. But no matter what life throws at her, Lucile will live on as a trailblazing and fearless fashion icon, never letting go of what she worked so hard to earn. This is her story.


Release Date: July 5, 2022

I received a free copy of A Dress of Violet Taffeta through Austenprose PR for a book tour. Thank you so much for this opportunity!

I genuinely love historical fiction novels that are inspired by true events and people. And this is another one to add to the list of just beautifully inspiring reads!

A Dress of Violet Taffeta gives us a story of a strong determined woman who decides to take control of her life after being deserted by her husband. Instead of allowing men to run her life, she made a plan to become a fashion designer and eventually became a fashion icon.

Lucy, or Lady Duff Gordon, is such an inspiring woman! I loved reading her story from start to finish. I was captivated by the descriptions of the gowns she designed and the fabrics she used. As a designer myself, I really connected with her, especially in the little moments where she found inspiration in the world around her, making mental notes on colors that would work well together. I simply admired Lucy’s tenacity to push back on societal norms. No longer caring to be seen as a divorcee, not needing the support of a man, and being brave enough to enter an industry that was dominated by men.

I simply admired Lucy’s tenacity to push back on societal norms.

I also appreciated seeing the dual perspectives, not only do we get to see Lucy’s point of view, but we also see the point of view of her scullery maid who later becomes her business partner, Celia. I really enjoyed seeing Celia’s perspective, so we got to see both sides of the business. Celia often encouraging Lucy to be more assertive with her business. And we also see Celia’s confidence grow becoming more self-assured of herself and eager to see Lucy’s fashion business grow.

And if you weren’t familiar with Lady Duff Gordon before, let me just share that she was also a survivor of the Titanic! I’ve already shared that I’m captivated by the Titanic Legacy, so learning and seeing this snippet just made me love this story even more.

I highly recommend this to those that enjoy historical fiction, have a love for fashion, and seeing strong leading women!


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