Thursday, June 24, 2010

Early Victorian Fashion

photo courtesy of

 Early Victorian fashion dates from 1837 to late 1856. In this time women's fashion was very modest.

Dresses from this period include:
Narrow shoulders and bodice.
Very small waists.
Exceptionally full skirts in the hip.
Hoops needed to support the petticoats and fullness of the skirt.
Long skirts completely covering the body.

The goal of dresses from this time period were to give the appearance of a weak and dainty upper body with extremely full hips and large lower body.

photo courtesy of

Deep set bonnets were worn to hide the face and neck of the wearer. Mostly commonly  the face of the wearer was only seen when they looked directly at you.

courtesy of

Evening gowns covered literally every bit of skin minus the face. This is also the first period in time we see protesters against wearing such garments. The protesters were fighting against the health issues the came from wearing such restrictive garments.

Towards the end of Early Victorian fashion going into Mid Victorian fashion fullness of skirts begin to look asymmetrical and full in the back which is commonly referred to as bustle or bustling. Geometric shapes and stripes become more popular in garments.

Popular accessories worn  or used in this period were necklaces, wraps, shawls and parasols. During the early Victorian period earrings went from flat and round to short dangle style.

 Neck ribbons were popular and usually had a cameo place in the front of the neck. Under sleeves were similar to today's layering. It was a shirt that had sleeves that extended out past the dress being worn.

We can't forget the best part! Here are some examples of Early Victorian Handbags and shoes. The handbag is a silver mesh handbag. Many mesh handbags were made of actual gun metal.

 In this period of fashion history we meet the first couture designer. Charles Frederick Worth is the first real fashion designer. Not to be confused with a tailor. Meaning:  he designed gowns from his own inspiration and not from his client telling him how to fit a garment for their needs.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Made by Lena