Sunday, June 25, 2017

Mid 1860's Red and Black Wrapper Gown

From the seller:
An antique original 1860 dress that has recently been found at a New England estate sale. The dress is made of cashmere and has a large red leaf pattern on a black background. The neckline, front opening and hemline are made of red cashmere. The front opening has black velvet piping and black velvet button closure. The skirt has a long back sweep.  It is fully lined with cotton.  The dress is in very good and sturdy condition. There are a few scattered moth nips, mostly to the back train. Bust 38 Loose fitting waist 30 Front skirt length 42 Back length 55.
From Me:

I love this wrapper if for no other reason that the use of colors. The print and the plain but vivid red border look perfect together.

1864 Fashion Plate

1862 Fashion Plate

Although I think this particular wrapper/morning dress is from 1864/1865, I wanted to show the 1862 one for the neckline.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

What big elbows you have, Grandma! 1830's Silk Dress

From the seller:


A most becoming and charming rare American 1830 - 1840 grey silk hand stitched one piece gown with matching cape FOR STUDY. Recently de-accessioned from the Rochester Historical society in New York State, and still retaining its original identification museum tags.
The dress has a back hook and loop closure with long gigot sleeves and the waistline has cartilage pleating in back only and the front is decorated with pleating.
 The bodice is lined with polished cotton and the skirt is unlined.  Piping around drop armscyes, travelling across back  to waist line. Piping around waist line.
Bodice has 5 whale bone baleen stays.
The gown is in very good and sturdy condition.
There is underarm discoloration, and scattered staining, on bodice as well as skirt.
Two back closure hooks missing. There has been a seam opened up around waist line, probably a pleat, and easy fix.  There are two tucks to bring in the opening of the neckline, can easily be released.

None of the flaws are major and do not distract from the overall appearance of the gown. A rare and highly collectible early garment.
Bust 32"
Waist 26"
Length of sleeves 19"
Length of dress from shoulder seam to hemline in back 56".
A very attractive early 19th century gown.

Antique clothing is for display and should not be worn.

From Me:

There is no explaining the 1830's. There just isn't. It's the reason that the 1840's styles are so somber....

1860's Blue and Pale Yellow Wrapper Gown

From the seller:

Offering an exceptional fetching Civil war era 1850- 1860's lady's dressing gown in ivory wool and cotton with blue silk insert trim, with white braided trim, machine sewn and hand sewn.
Recently de-accessioned from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC.
The  bodice is piped at armscyes at drop shoulder. The gown is lined with ivory colored polished cotton in bodice and gauze in skirt.  Gown has original fabric covered button closures in front, and one side pocket. The long curved arm sleeves and flared at top and tapering to wrist.

The back waistline is gathered with cartilage pleating hidden by a large back split peplum.

The gown is in fair to good study condition.  There is underarm discoloration stains.   Fringes are complete and not missing. Discoloration staining on front on hem line as shown in photo.  Scattered very small pin size dot oxidation spots all over. Few small holes in tan challis and in blue silk trim. Few small brown spots on front blue silk trim. The fabric is rich and supple.
Bust 38", Waist 38", Sleeve length 21", Length from shoulder to front hem 57",  Length from shoulder to back train 69", Shoulders across back 15", Circumference at hem line 168-1/2".
In fair to good, presentable condition and a great display gown for study or display. A beautiful display gown.
A superb hard to come by dress of 160+ years of graceful life.
This is a wonderful piece to add to an early collection.

From Me:

I think the extant one is later than the one above from a fashion mag circa 1863, but the similarities are pretty obvious: the design down the front, the shape of the sleeves, ect. The only reason I think the extant one is later is the "tails" in the back which were more popular in the later 1860's/early 1870's.

The above are the original photos from the MET...and the reason I think it's really a pale yellow rather than an ivory. Or else, it's faded a lot since it's been de-accessioned!

Here is a lovely gown that was inspired by this extant one.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

1830's Dress with Red and Green Paisleys

From the seller:

Rare C 1833 Boteh Printed Wool Dress SM

Please Scroll Down For More Photos and Description

This printed dress is a light weight wool with a sylized boteh print in olive green and dark red on a cream background with a wavy taupe stripe. It has a slightly high waist with self belt, wide collar, front placket with a padded fan front bodice, ruched at the shoulder, upper sleeves and above the button cuff. IT has some thin sp;ots and a few minor tears, supported by a gauze lining, it has a stain on the front neck by the collar, hooks in front, missing some hooks/eyes. The lining has rust stains on the shoulders probably from a metal hanger, some small tears under the hooks/eyes, a little faded under the arms. It was from the Metropolitan Museum of Art NYC. Overall they called it in fair condition, I would call it good (I'm less picky and giving it a few points for age). It's 32 inches around the bust, waist is 26 and it's 51 inches long.

From Me:

For some reason, the 1830's appear to be a mix of Dr. Seuss (just take a look at the hairstyles!), the 1970's (see the colors above? Tomato Red & Avocado Green), and Kate Greenway's illustrations and yet, despite all that, it somehow works.

Here is the original info from the MET:


Published 1833–38
Topics Europe, cotton, 1833–38, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Costume, Cotton, Dresses, European

Identifier mma_dress_82292
Accession_number C.I.38.23.4a, b
Culture European
Date 1833–38

For a specific date, I believe it's more towards the 1837/1838 time period.  In 1833, they were still all about puffed sleeves of doom!

Lovely Buttercream Yellow 1890's Dress

From the seller:

Victorian ca 1870's Ivory Silk 2Pc Dress w Beading SM This beautiful Victorian dress is made from a very heavy silk satin. The bodice is lined with bones in the seams. It hooks down the front an dhas wide beaded trim around the bottom and some on the edge of the sleeves. It has very gathered sleeves tapering to the wrist. IT has opened seam on the shoulder, missing the trim / lace or silk on the front yoke, a few very small pin head to just over holes. Both the skirt and the top have small scattered spots and is overall dusty looking, missing beads. It measures 29 inches around the bust, waist is 20 1/2 and is 18 inches long from shoulder to center front point. The skirt has pretty cording around the bottom edge, it's lined in cotton and hooks at the waist. It's smooth in front and pleated in back, there's a ribbon across the back to hold the pleats in place underneath. A few very light, small spots and a few pin head holes, but there is a water spot on the back (photo), waistband has a few tears. There are 2 streamers with beaded fringe that are detached.  It measures 21 inches around the waist, hips full and it's 38 inches long.

From Me:
How anyone could mistake this for an 1870's bustle with those sleeves is beyond me. Clearly, this is mid 1890's. Given the measurements, to include the skirt being 38" long, I think this was for a teenager and not an adult.
1894 Fashin Plate