Harry Ransom CenterThe University of Texas at Austin

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The Burgundy Ball Gown Part of composite image  
Costume design by Walter Plunkett Vivien Leigh and Victor Fleming Part of composite image

I won't go, Rhett! I can't - until this - this misunderstanding is cleared up.

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You're not going to cheat Miss Melly out of the satisfaction of publicly ordering you out of her house!

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Rhett, there was nothing wrong! India hates me so! I can't go Rhett. I couldn't face it!

If you don't show your face tonight you'll never be able to show it in this town as long as you live ... And while that wouldn't bother me, you're not going to ruin Bonnie's chances! ... You're going to that party if only for her sake.

Vivien Leigh

Rhett takes a step toward the clothes closet.


Reluctantly she gets up and trembling, starts to take off her wrapper.


-searching through the dresses. Rhett takes one of the gowns from the closet.


Wear that!
(throws it at her)
Nothing modest or matronly will do for this occasion.

Ransom Center costumes are not on permanent exhibition because of the delicate nature of these items.

Both Selznick and Victor Fleming wanted Vivien Leigh to show more cleavage in the birthday party scene. The memorandum below would indicate that Myron Selznick knew someone who could help create the illusion.

Mrs. Rabwin


Please talk to Mr. Fleming,who I discovered to my pleasure feels even more keenly about
the breastwork situation than I do, and ask him if he would kindly make this his personal
department, in which case turn over to him the woman that Mr. Selznick told us about
and arrange a meeting between her, Miss Leigh, and Mr. Fleming - but I have pestered
poor Vivien so much about this,please explain to Victor that I would rather he became
the sole heavy from now on and that he is worried about it personally, which is a fact,
and tell him that if she doesn't look at least as good as Alice Faye in this particular
department, I'll consider that his whole life has been wasted. Please keep me advised
on this.


The Burgundy Ball Gown: Side The Burgundy Ball Gown: Back

The replica of the gown Scarlett wore to Ashley Wilkes' birthday party was made with 16 yards of French silk velvet. It took 191 hours to complete, from November 30, 1986 to January 19, 1987. The original is also housed in the Film Archive at the Harry Ransom Center.

Dress Replication Project Director: Sister Mary Elizabeth Joyce, Incarnate Word College, San Antonio

Texas Designers: Carrie Harrell and Jan Hevenor

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Exhibit design by Steve L. Wilson

Learn how you can save the Green Curtain Dress and other costumes from Gone With The Wind.