Victorian

Rules for Victorian Dressing, Part 2

Rules for Victorian Dressing, Part 2

You wouldn't wear an evening gown to work, would you? Here's how to dress without provoking the Victorian etiquette police, part 2: eveningwear & sportswear.

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Rules for Victorian Dressing, Part I

Rules for Victorian Dressing, Part I

You wouldn't wear an evening gown to work, would you? Here's how to dress without provoking the Victorian etiquette police. Part 1 covers daywear.

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Victorian Jewelry

Victorian Jewelry

Too often we settle for pale imitations or modern costume jewelry to adorn our Victorian gowns, but that doesn't have to be the case: here's a guide.

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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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Victorian Knit & Crochet

Victorian Knit & Crochet

C. Claridge translates some gorgeous but cryptic Victorian instructions into modern-style knitting and crochet diagrams, and then tries them out.

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Miniature Portraits & Mourning Jewelry

Miniature Portraits & Mourning Jewelry

Two easy techniques, using polymer clay, to create beautiful and convincing portrait and mourning jewelry appropriate for the 18th and 19th centuries.

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Millinery Design part 4: Ostrich Plume Confections by Lynn McMasters

Millinery Design part 4: Ostrich Plume Confections by Lynn McMasters

My passion for Ostrich plumes started when I saw the opening credits of the 1997 movie Wings of the Dove.

Where do such plumes come from?

How do milliners fabricate them and can I create such confections?

These are all questions I asked myself then, and they led me on a course of study and experimentation. In this article I will share some of what I have learned along the way.

 

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Millinery Design Part 3: How to add Life to Ribbon Loops and Bows by Lynn McMasters

Millinery Design Part 3: How to add Life to Ribbon Loops and Bows by Lynn McMasters

or My hat looks like it has a dead fish on top because the bow just lies there! How can I fix that?

One of the most often used decorative elements on late Victorian and Edwardian hats were bows and ribbon loops.

To a non-milliner, trying to recreate some of these fantastic hats may seem a daunting task. Here are some tricks that simplify things.

 

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Authentic Victorian Trimming Ideas

Authentic Victorian Trimming Ideas

The Victorians loved their trimmings! But modern just isn't the same. Gina shows you how to make the authentic period trims that make your gown "pop".

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Millinery Design Part 2: Adding Large Areas of Silk Flowers by Lynn McMasters

Millinery Design Part 2: Adding Large Areas of Silk Flowers by Lynn McMasters

This month Lynn shows us how to add large areas of silk flowers or ribbon decorations to a hat, without using glue and without sewing each one on individually.

Why would you want to add decorations to a hat in this way?

There are several reasons, but the most important would be to save the base hat from being damaged, either because it is vintage or because you might want to redress it in the future and anything you do now will have to be undone.

 

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Millinery Design Part 1: How to Choose the Decorations for a Late 19th Century Hat by Lynn McMasters

Millinery Design Part 1: How to Choose the Decorations for a Late 19th Century Hat by Lynn McMasters

Have you ever walked into a large craft or fabric store to purchase the things you need to decorate that fantastic hat you're making, and been totally overwhelmed by the possibilities?

Should your hat be simple and elegant, or should it be a liberally decorated, multi-coloured feast of delights?

Professional period milliner Lynn McMasters shares her secrets with us in this new series on millinery design.

 

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The Cage Crinoline, Part 3

The Cage Crinoline, Part 3

Constance concludes her exploration of the Victorian cage crinoline with the recreation of a large covered crinoline from 1868.

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The Cage Crinoline, Part 1

The Cage Crinoline, Part 1

Constance explores how, during the mid C1800s, skirts expanded - supported firstly by stiff petticoats and then cage crinolines.

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The Cage Crinoline, Part 2

The Cage Crinoline, Part 2

Constance MacKenzie continues exploring the crinoline's development, making a light & collapsible Victorian cage crinoline.

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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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1860's Day Dress Study

1860's Day Dress Study

Museums are full of elaborate, high-end Victorian gowns, but working-class garb is more elusive. Joy takes an in-depth look at an 1860's day dress.

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How to make a Tucked Petticoat

How to make a Tucked Petticoat

Tucks were a favorite decoration from the 1820s to Teens: here's how to create a mid-19th c.-style tucked petticoat, start to finish.

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Early Victorian Layers, part 2

Early Victorian Layers, part 2

In Part II, we look at the numerous skirt supports that the early Victorian woman wore to hold out her skirts and look fashionable.

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Early Victorian Layers, part 1

Early Victorian Layers, part 1

Studying the undergarments of a transitional period in which styles shifted slowly but dramatically.

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Analyzing the Construction of Three Victorian Evening Bodices by Sunny Buchler

Analyzing the Construction of Three Victorian Evening Bodices by Sunny Buchler

I've often been frustrated that there are wonderful Victorian patterns available (published in the period or drafted from extant dresses) but there is very little information on how to put the pieces together or on the other finishing details that go into making historical dress.

Here I'll address this gap by doing a photographic analysis of the construction techniques used in three Victorian evening bodices in my personal collection.

Due to the Single Pattern Project, I'm most interested in the elliptical style. Two of the bodices were either worn with elliptical skirts or with the early bustle style, the third was probably worn with the earlier circular hoop style.

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