Monday, May 11, 2015

Late 1880's Bustle Gown

From the seller:

Victorian ca 1870's - 1880's Brown Silk Bustle Dress w Carnival Beads Sm

Please Scroll Down For More Photos and Description

This lovely Victorian dress is made from brown silk taffeta. The bodice has had the sleeves re-worked / shortened but otherwise in excellent condition. The bodice is trimmed with carnival beaded leaves and it buttons with seed beads covered ball buttons, all there and in good condition but missing a very few beads on the buttons, nothing major. It's lined in cotton, no bones, it doesn't look like it ever had any. Lining shows some underarm stains, but only very slightly shows on the taffeta,as there's padding between the cotton and taffeta to protect the outside. There's a few pin to pin head holes in the sleeves similar to the one shown in the photo. The skirt is pleated, pleats are sewn flat to approx. 10 inches from the hem then hang open. The skirt is lined in dark brown polished cotton. The seam on the back side of the waistband (hand sewn in) is opening and needs to be stitched and the hook at the waistband has pulled a hole into the waistband that needs to be repaired. The way it's constructed, you could easily put an inch or so extension to the waistband and where the seam is loose, move it an inch and the extension would be completely covered. Bodice measures 35 inches around the bust, across the back shoulder is 10 3/4 inches, waist is 24 and it's 21 1/4 inches long from shoulder to center front point. The skirt measures 23 1/2 inches around the waist, hips are full and it's 40 3/4 inches long. Excellent vintage condition.

From Me:

I know it looks really off but I think that's just the way it's displayed and the fact it's missing pieces (like the lower sleeves). 1880's.


  1. I agree, short sleeves are totally throwing it off. High necked bodice, long sleeves. But gorgeous nonetheless.

    1. It is a very interesting piece. My guess is that someone cannibalized the sleeves for a dress a few years later - maybe in the Edwardian era- as well as maybe an overskirt that probably should go with this.