Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

Toreador suit

Date:
fourth quarter 19th century
Culture:
probably Mexican
Medium:
silk, glass, jet, silk, cotton
Dimensions:
Length at CB (a): 17 in. (43.2 cm) Length at CB (b): 38 in. (96.5 cm) Length at CF (c): 19 in. (48.3 cm)
Credit Line:
Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of Adele Simpson, 1944
Accession Number:
2009.300.110a–c
Not on view
The tradition of bullfighting spread to Mexico with the Spanish occupation in the 16th century. The traditional traje de luces or suit of lights consists of fitted knee-length pants, vest, jacket, tie, pink stockings, and cape, and has remained unchanged for nearly two hundred years. The suits are quite expensive and take up to a month to create, with several seamstresses working in conjunction. The most traditional are densely embroidered in metallic gold and silver braid, beads, and sequins.
Marking: Button on pants is stamped: "Solide Elegant"
Another button is stamped: "Fine Clothing"
Button on leg stamped: "Nouveaute"
Second button on leg stamped: "Elegant"
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