Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Mid to Late 1860's Green Checked Dress

From the seller:

Light green and cream checked taffeta 1860's gown. This dress has it's original belt which is separate from the dress. The trim is green silk which has been cut in scallops, gathered on a string, and hand stitched to the dress. This trim is shattering and falling off in places. There are nine buttons. They were originally ball buttons covered with silk and tatting but they have all disintegrated completely or in some degree. The fabric of the dress has many stains and holes and is shattering in spots. The damage is too extensive to photograph each flaw. The bottom of the skirt is faced with green braid and, on the inside, polished cotton (picture 8) which is stained. The skirt is lined with tarlatan which has breaks and tears throughout. The sleeves are something I have never seen before. From the outside of the gown they look like pagoda sleeves, but underneath that they are really coat sleeves. You can see this in photos 6 and 7. The bodice is flat lined with muslin. There is a pocket in the skirt which you can see in photo 10. The belt is separate from the dress and is lined with polished cotton. Picture 9 shows the dress without the belt. The belt closes at the front with an overlap and a belt loop. The back of the belt has a bow at center back. Note the two loops at the waist in photo 11. These loops were used to hang up the dress on a hook, since many people did not use hangers at the time, and even closets were not that common for everyone. The skirt is stitch flat to the front of the bodice, the sides are knife pleated and the back is gathered. The waist and armscyes are piped. Although this dress could be worn with care, I would be concerned that just the act of wearing it would cause even further damage. It is great that the belt is still with the dress. Measurements: waist 22 inches, bust 30, skirt front length 41 inches, skirt back 47, skirt circumference at bottom 140", Back bodice length from neck to waist 15 inches.

From Me:
I LOVE this cheater method for making it look like a jacket bodice and skirt when it's really just one dress. Very useful to know!

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