Thursday, 14 March 2013

Field trip! (sorta)

My mother volunteers at a local living museum (where I worked for 6 awesome summers) called kings landing.  She volunteers in their collections building accessioning (marking and registering) donated and purchased pieces for the museums collection.

So anyway, the most recent collection she was assigned involved some historical garments, which she was waiting to work on till I had a day off.

Well that day was today!

So enjoy some neat pictures of clothes from the 1830's to the 1890's and maybe beyond!  I know I loved getting to look them over.

So this is the first one she pulled out, it is truquiose blue (my flash washed it out bigtime) with wine red velvet piping.  This is the sleeve cuff.
 How to finish edges before the invention of the surger version 1: Bind them with seam binding.

 The other version (which I thought I got a picture of, but didn't apparently) was to whip-stitch the edges to prevent fraying.

Turns out this was made next door!

 And here is the back and the actual colour of the coat.  Pretty vibrant for being so old!

French fashion, straight from Paris:

That is a lot of hand work work...

 Wayyy too frou-frou for my tastes, but still beautiful.

Whoops....either someone forgot to finish this detail on the skirt or...I'm not sure what happened.

 A close up of the unfinished party, you an see the pattern for where they were meant to sew that woven ribbon.

And down on the bottom, apparently shoddy manufacturing isn't a new issue...

 This is what it was supposed to look like!

This is more my taste. I like the simpler fashions. I also liked how the buttons go off on an angle here (hard to tell in this shot).

The back flap to go over that bustle.

Over the Judy so the bustle bit could hang better.

The slanted buttons at the bottom are a bit easier to see on the Judy. Sadly, the Judy was too big for this coat.

This one (which I loved) was just able to fit over the Judy   It's in three parts: a separate skirt and bodice and collar. The bodice hooked under the skirt to hold it on, and closed up the back in a centered opening.  The really cool part was the lace on the back was separate and hooked onto the shoulder and side seam to cover up the back closure.

This is a detail shot of the lace and mesh work on the bodice, it's like modern crinoline but so much less scratchy and polyester.

The back with it's train.

 And the collar which hooked onto the bodice with hook and eyes.

I realized when we took it off, I had it on backwards...dang.  That high part should have been in back. :/

The entire dress was a lacy overlay over purple silk (maybe?)  The skirt was in much better shape then the bodice which was slashed with age.

  It's just so PRETTY!

A shot of the front with its detail.

 The sleeve.

This was an unfinished skirt, it was huge, leading me to believe it might have been for over a hoop skirt or ment to later be pleated in.

All of the embroidered details were hand appliqued to the dress.  This one was over a seam to hide the line.

The white lines seen here actually the seam biding on the inside seams, the center of a few of the apliques were lace and therefore see through.

 This top, was probably one of the oldest, but it looked brand new.

 Back in the short waisted, hoop skirt era....

Last one:
This one only had the coat and an over skirt.

I love the eyeball buttons....

It looks like their is a pocket...but there isn't.

 Again, too skinny for the Judy...

The sleeve cuff.

The back of the over skirt.

With a butt-bow that would make a Sailor Moon character jealous.

The actual colour of the garment.

The buttons are watching you:

The end!


  1. That is pretty cool. A field trip, without teachers, screaming kids and somewhere you want to actually go! Can't complain about that!

  2. Hey, the purple one that you say is 'slashed with age' - if it IS silk, then it is probably weighted silk. For a while, to make silk seem heavier (and therefore, better quality) than it actually was, it was treated with metal salts. In the long term, this is not good for the silk... it ends up tearing along the warp or the weft in multiple straight lines.

  3. Yeah. That is exactly what was going on.