A Little Fall Style…

Living in Southern California, the changing of the seasons is not always obvious and sometimes, it seems that the only sign is the change in the time when the sun rises. However, we’re not completely immune to Fall’s influence… in the course of researching another topic, we came across a series of dresses in shades of plum, violet, and lavender as suggested in this palette:

Palette1

 

And here’s the dress- a day dress from circa 1893:

Day Dress c. 1893

Bourdereau Veron & Cie, Place de la Bourse, Paris, Day Dress, c. 1893; Kent State University Museum (1983.1.207 ab)

Day Dress c. 1893

Rear View

Although lighting and computer monitors can influence colors, it’s still evident that the bodice and over-skirt are constructed of a lighter shade of a rose color while the underskirt and bodice front are more of a burgundy/brown. Also, the use of black beading on the front also further darken the dress front.

Day Dress c. 1893

Side Profile

Day Dress c. 1893

Close-up of front bodice (not sure why it was cropped this way).

Day Dress c. 1893

Close-up of bodice back.

The bodice back shows off interesting floral pattern that’s on the bodice back, sleeves, and over-skirt; note how it’s been precisely pieced together on the center back so that the pattern is uninterrupted. That’s our take for now on Fall colors for 2018 but we’ll be back with more in the future. 🙂

 

The Princess Line Dress- One Interesting Example

One of the most noteworthy features of Mid-Bustle Era (roughly 1876-1881), fashion was the advent of the princess line dress. Attributed to Charles Worth who supposedly created the style for Princess Alexandra’s wedding dress, the princess line style was characterized by the lack of the defined waist created by the conventional bodice/skirt combination as seen in these original photographs:

Portrait Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878 - 1881

Portrait Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878 - 1881

Now, here’s one interesting take on the style:

Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878

It’s difficult to make out the specific fabrics from the pictures but we assume that it’s silk. The color combination of pale green, chartreuse, brown and cobalt blue is interesting; not our first choice but it’s a bit different from what is normally seen from extant examples.

Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878

Side Profile

Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878

Rear View

One of the most interesting features of this dress is the use of a capote; that’s not something we’ve seen utilized with a dress. With its upright mandarin collar and capote, it’s more suggestive of outerwear, along the lines of a redingote. Below are some more pictures:

Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878

Upper Front with capote.

As can be seen from this close-up of the capote, it’s been artfully cut in layers so that there is no interruption to the pattern of the fashion fabric.

Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878

Back view with capote.

Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878

Close-up of the front.

Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878

Dress unbuttoned to show interior detail.

The interior detail shown here is interesting in that it employs the same fashion fabric underneath that’s also the outside on the cuffs, train and back.

Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878

Close-Up of the front.

As can be seen here, what we think is “brown” fabric is actually close brown stripes.

Princess Line Day Dress c. 1878

View of the train.

The train is characteristic of Mid-Bustle Era style, lot and fanning out. Not as extreme as some examples with the “mermaid tail” but the pleating does create a pleasing profile.

Unfortunately, we know almost nothing about the dresse’s provenance or the construction details; all we can do is speculate from the available pictures. In terms of dating, it’s probably safe to say that it falls in the 1878 – 1881 period (although the picture that we obtained indicates 1878). We suspect that these pictures were part of some sort of auction listing although we were unable to find out anything specific. But, in spite of the lack of information, it’s still an interesting example of a style that had a fairly short lifespan. Hopefully, we’ll find out more in the future. 🙂