antique clothing

New Book Reviews

New Book Reviews

Looking for some last minute gift suggestions? Cathy reviews two new books from 2010: Fashioning Fashion and High Style.

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Whitework Embroidery

Whitework Embroidery

Is it Ayrshire, Madeira, Dresden work, Hardanger, Limerick, Carrickmacross lace or Broderie Anglaise? Know your whitework!

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Forensic Costuming

Forensic Costuming

When making a costume, an extant garment is the ideal research source. Once you have one,  how do you analyze it?

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18th Century Upcycling: The Afterlife of a Quilted Petticoat

18th Century Upcycling: The Afterlife of a Quilted Petticoat

When researching garments, one often comes across items that force us to think about clothes in a new way. Serena walks us through a mysterious pair of breeches.

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c.1775 Dress: The Bodice

c.1775 Dress: The Bodice

Serena discusses real eighteenth century bodice construction methods, and then builds one step by step using those principles.

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A Regency Baby Gown

A Regency Baby Gown

Amanda analyses a rare find and compares it to museum examples around the world so that the techniques can be recreated accurately.

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1790s Transitional Brocade Bodice

1790s Transitional Brocade Bodice

This early 1790s bodice has features of earlier dresses, but also hints at later styles, and showcases a variety of different techniques.

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Woodruff-Fontaine Collection, part II

Woodruff-Fontaine Collection, part II

Woodruff-Fontaine House has one of the most extensive costume collections in the American South. We take a tour.

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Two Worth Bodices

Two Worth Bodices

Charles Frederick Worth is remembered as the father of haute couture, and Suzi Clarke has a couple of treasures of his to show us...

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Analyzing a Worth Day Dress

Analyzing a Worth Day Dress

The Chicago History Museum's collection contains over fifty gowns from the House of Worth. This one is from 1866-67.

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Celestia's Homemade Dress

Celestia's Homemade Dress

We're not the only ones who curse over our sewing. In the early 1870s, Celestia Freeman made herself a dress - and she struggled too!

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1875 Wedding Dress (2)

1875 Wedding Dress (2)

I have the honor to own my great-grandmother’s 1875 wedding dress. The more I look closely at this heirloom, the more fascinating it is!

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1875 Wedding Dress

1875 Wedding Dress

A close look at an authentic Victorian dress, with many photos, construction and sewing details, and fashion plates of the time.

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Linen Chemise, 1879

Linen Chemise, 1879

An eye-opening combination of machine sewing and delicate hand stitching.

Bonus article from FR

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Mrs Romyn Hitchcock's Dress

Mrs Romyn Hitchcock's Dress

Dating an historic dress is an involved process. Morgan shares her study of an impressive C19th dress owned by Mrs R. Hitchcock.

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1880s Directoire Coat Study

1880s Directoire Coat Study

Good examples of 19th century ladies tailoring aren't always easy to find. Chantal walks us through a study of her new treasure, a Directoire coat from the 1880s.

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A Real 1880s Evening Bodice

A Real 1880s Evening Bodice

Discussing authentic Victorian sewing methods, including 50 detail photos inside & outside an antique bodice.

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How to Make: Worth Ironwork Gown

How to Make: Worth Ironwork Gown

Growth happens outside of your comfort zone. If Worth could do it, so can we, right? Here's how Cynthia went there - and made it work.

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Appliquéd Beauty: An 1890s Coat with Flair

Appliquéd Beauty: An 1890s Coat with Flair

The mid-1890s were a dramatic time in fashion history. Astrida explores the history and construction of this eye-catching, high-fashion, late C19th coat. 

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Case Study: The 1890s Long Jacket

Case Study: The 1890s Long Jacket

Kelly takes us deep inside this Belle Epoque jacket - a lucky garage sale find - to explore the complex 'engineering' behind late Victorian tailoring.

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