|Mrs. McLean, who was, before her marriage, Miss Evelyn L. Walsh, is one of Washington's most distinguished hostesses. The far-famed Hope diamond now occupies an important place in Mrs. McLean's notable collection of jewels.|
|THE FIRST GOWN|
Erte's description of this month's cover translated from the French.
THE eternal story of the first temptation always interested me, and I used to try to decide on which chords of the feminine soul the Prince of Darkness had to play, when disguised as a serpent, in order to make woman fail into the abyss of disobedience to the Creator's laws.
Once I dreamed of our ancestor, Eve, and this is what I saw: The serpent which became the embodiment of wisdom, thanks to the Evil One, had commanded the birds, who were in his power, to bedeck Eve with flowers. Although almost entirely concealing her form, her neck and arms were left revealed in quite a modern decolletage and when, finally, the birds encircled her head, suggesting an unusual coiffure, Eve began to believe herself a superior being.
Urged by the Tempter, she wandered to a mirror-like pool where, like Narcissus, she admired herself, and with primitive coquetry, contemplated her beauty, and the words traced over her pliant body by the serpent—"La Premiere Robe".
So now I see a charming young person—perhaps one of the readers of these very words—gazing in a mirror, an actual mirror. What she sees, I also see: there are flowers covering her gown, but they are artificial, being merely embroidered. Then, there is an artificial bird in her coiffure—quite different from those which the Tempter summoned to the Garden for Eve. But this modern gown has almost exactly the same decolletage as the first gown Eve wore, and always . . . always, there is the same serpent, invisible to most people, with that diabolic glint lurking in its eyes.