Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Navy Wool and Velvet Turn of the Century Outfit

From the seller:

Here you have a wonderful late Victorian 2 piece wool dress. Most of the pictures appear lighter to show the detail. The dress is made of medium weight navy blue wool which has a fine ribbed pattern to it used at an angle in construction. It is fully lined with dark blue cotton on the skirt and light brown and white striped cotton in the top, there is one narrow strip of blue and white gingham on the inside in the front where it appears to have been let out about a half inch which is behind the pleated front bust area so it doesn’t show on the outside. I find 13 stays which are fabric covered, one has a brass tip protruding, so I think they are metal. It is decorated with black 3/4 inch black bead trim around collar, around crushed navy blue velvet collar inset, down left side of front where original silk lace is attached, around waist and at cuffs. The beads appear to be 99.8% all there, with just a few missing on a 1/4 section in the back. Black silk lace is faded and a bit weak with multiple holes in the fine net area between thicker pattern. The crushed velvet appears to be original and is a nearly purple deep blue. I don’t see any holes in the wool top, though there are a few areas that appear to have had some hand done seam repairs, and one of the stays is covered and sewn in differently than the others. There are probably a dozen tiny holes in the front of the skirt and one that is about a quarter inch across. All are difficult to see and have not been mended. Full skirt has heavy black fuzzy dust ruffle around bottom edge, picture shows the black edge and interior lining. The pictures show the white cover of my dress form, as the skirt was larger than the waist of the form and it is not easily adjustable. Measurements: 12" across top of shoulders, 16 ½" across back at underarm, top of shoulder at collar to waist 16 1/4", shoulder to sleeve hem 22" (not counting lace), 16" underarm to sleeve hem, 9" around sleeve cuff, which has an inch and a half bead trimmed slit, 16" + around sleeve opening at shoulder, about 14" around upper arm at underarm. Neck 14" around, 29" waist allowance, approx. 19" across bust area. Skirt has generous 29" waist with two 1 1/4" wide metal rods to hook back of top to it. Hook and eye closures are at furthest edge of waistband; but, back of skirt has nearly an inch overlap of the opening. Skirt measures 37" long in front and 38 ½" long in back. All lining appears to be in good condition with just a small amount of discoloration underarms, on collar and top of back lining, where the camisole did not cover the skin and I find one small split in brown lining, less than ½". Please ask questions if I failed to mention something important to you. This is a great authentic Victorian outfit, of fine quality and in very good condition for it’s age. If you win it and are interested in replacing the silk lace, I can check my vintage black lace trim to see if I have anything that would be appropriate to restore it. There would be extra cost for the lace. I am amazed at the excellent condition of all of the decorative parts, other than the silk lace.

From Me:

It's hard to tell if this is just a late 1890s or an early 1900s but it's within that time period. Given the bodice style alone, I'm putting it in the Edwardian era but, please, remember that it could very easily be from about 5 years earlier- placing it at the end of the Victorian era.

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