Archive for December, 2008

CDV: Girl with Hairnet, c. 1862-64

Posted in 1860s, Brooches, CDV, girls, Plain Hairnets, young women with tags , , , , , , , on December 17, 2008 by Alinka Lesbianka
Girl with Hairnet, c. 1862-64

CDV: Girl with Hairnet, c. 1862-64

Girl with Hairnet, backmark

CDV: Girl with Hairnet, backmark

Backmark: “E.G. Gordon, Photographer, Williams’ Block, Cor. Madison & Elm Sts., Skowhegan, ME. The Negative from which this Picture was taken is preserved, and duplicates can be furnished at any time.”

Date: c. 1862-64

Subject: Profile of a Girl

Location: Skowhegan, Maine

Dress: This girl’s dress has small, decorative buttons on the center-front opening. She wears a short white standing collar pined or basted to the neckline of her bodice, and a brooch at the center.

Hair: Her hair is center-parted and combed straight back and down from the face, behind her ears, and into a mass of braids pinned up at the nape of her neck. A fine, plain hairnet helps keep it tidy.

Girls wore their hair short (in what we would now call a bob) until early adolescence, when they began to grow it out and pin it up in the same fashion as women. The large amount of hair this girl has indicates that she may be using false braids to supplement her still-growing locks.

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Tintype: Girl in Hat

Posted in 1860s, neckties, Tintypes, young women with tags , , , , , , on December 16, 2008 by Alinka Lesbianka
Girl in Hat, c. 1865-70

Tintype: Girl in Hat, c. 1865-70

Backmark: None

Date: c. 1865-70

Subject: Young Woman

Location: Unknown

Dress:  This young woman wears a bodice trimmed with ribbon in a large geometric pattern.  It is unclear whether the buttons are functional or decorative.  She wears a ribbon necktie that is either pinned to a high collar or forms the collar itself.  She wears no visible jewelry.

Hat & Hair:  Her hair is pulled straight back from her face and arranged in a vertical oval-shaped roll at the back of her head.  She wears a stylish hat, probably made of straw or woven straw and horsehair.  The low, flat-topped crown sits straight on her head, while the narrow brim comes to a point in front just over her eyebrows.  The hat is trimmed with ribbon and silk or wax flowers on the side.

CDV: Young Italian Woman

Posted in 1860s, CDV, European, young women with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on December 15, 2008 by Alinka Lesbianka
Young Italian Woman, c. 1866-68

CDV: Young Italian Woman, c. 1866-68

Young Italian Woman, backmark

CDV: Young Italian Woman, backmark

Backmark: “Studio Fotografico Goriziano F. Troester Cotrada S. Giovani No. 14”

Date: c. 1866-68

Subject: Young Woman

Location: Italy

Dress: Unfortunately, years of fading and a wash of watercolor paint have obscured most of the details of this image.  Her dress is a one-piece composed of bodice and attached skirt.  The entire dress is tinted green with watercolors. The bodice is gathered, with a center-front opening and buttons.  The bodice is trimmed with U-shaped ruching.  The skirt reaches to within inches of the floor, and is trimmed about a foot from the hem with two narrow stripes.

She wears a white apron, which is an unusual accessory in photographs of this era.  Possibly it was a local convention.  When Americans are photoraphed in aprons, the aprons are almost always the decorative silk kind.

She wears a relatively small cage crinoline, a size typical for the latter half of the 1860s.

Hair:  Her hair looks like it is brushed straight back and bound up, but it is difficult to tell because of the poor quality of the photograph.

CDV: Woman from Nice

Posted in 1860s, CDV, European, neckties, women with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 12, 2008 by Alinka Lesbianka
Woman from Nice, c. 1866

CDV: Woman from Nice, c. 1866

Woman from Nice, Backmark

CDV: Woman from Nice, Backmark

Backmark: “Photographie D’Art G Echtler Rue Adelaide , 3. Avenue de la Gare Atelier au rez de Chaussee NICE Tous les cliches sont conserves”

Date: c. 1866

Subject: Woman

Location: Nice, France

Dress: This woman wears a one-piece dress composed of a bodice and attached skirt.  The fabric could be wool or silk or a mixture of the two.  The bodice is dart-fitted and closes at center front with hooks and eyes.  Decorative buttons spaced approximately 3/4″ apart line the placket.

Her sleeves are the modified pagoda style we have seen so often in this blog.  They are trimmed with narrow ribbon or braid to form a mock cuff.

The skirt is pleated, hangs about 6″ from the floor in front, and dips slightly towards the sides and back.  The hem is covered with a wool tape to prevent fraying.

She wears a thick necktie with the band exposed and relatively high on her neck.  This neck height is typical of mid-to-late 1860s fashion.  Her white collar and undersleeves match each other, with a tiny row of dots around the edges and cuff.  These dots could be contrasting ribbon woven through eyelets, but there many other possibilities for how it was done.

Her only visible jewelry is a pair of drop earrings.

Hair: Her hair is center parted and arranged in a peculiar horizontal curl or wave over her ears.  She may have matching combs and ringlets down the back, but the photograph is too unclear to see exactly what is there.

CDV: End of the ’50s

Posted in 1850s, CDV, Outerwear, women with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 11, 2008 by Alinka Lesbianka
End of the '50s

CDV: End of the '50s

Backmark: None

Date: c. 1858

Subject: Woman

Location: Unknown

Dress: The dress is made from heavy watered silk, with three rows of gathered ruffles at the hem.  The ruffles may be of the same fabric or a coordinating fabric; from their more wrinkled texture, my guess is that they are a taffeta.  The ruffles are finished with a large (about 3/4″ wide) scallop, which was a popular edging at the time.

The woman wears a wide (about 3″) flat collar with some texture, indicating that it is lace or embroidered, and a slightly ruffled edge.  Note how she has placed the collar on top of her wrap.  She also wears full undersleeves, though details are not visible.  The dark spot below where her collar meets in front may be a brooch, but because it is much lower than most brooches, I think it is probably a button.  It may also be the hanging portion of a brooch.

Outerwear: She wears a mantle, which is in a style that was popular throughout the 1850s and into the 1860s.  (In fact, it survived in some form for most of the Victorian era).  This style mantle is characterized by opening in front, being slightly fitted over the shoulders, shorter in length over the arms, long tabs in the front, and a full back designed to flow over the full skirt.  The back of the mantle could range from just below waist-length to almost the knees.

This mantle also has a ruffled edges extending from the very elongated shoulder-line to her waist, where she holds it in place.  The fabric of the mantle is difficult to discern.  Some texture on her left arm appears to be lace (likely Chantilly lace, which was wildly popular).  Although most chantilly lace was worn as a simple triangular shawl, there are plenty of extant examples of cut-and-sewn garments from the lace to make it possible that this is one.

Hair: Her hair center-parted and arranged in several loose, curl-like rolls towards her face.  Her hair is at its widest between her temples and chin, which was the fashionable shape throughout the 1850s.  She is wearing some sort of headdress, with chenille or tassels of some other material hanging stylishly at the side.

CDV: Kate E. Perry

Posted in 1860s, Brooches, CDV, decorated hairnets, prints, watches, women with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on December 10, 2008 by Alinka Lesbianka
Kate E. Perry, c. 1860

CDV: Kate E. Perry, c. 1860

Kate E. Perry, backmark

CDV: Kate E. Perry, backmark

Backmark: I. G. Owen Newton, N.J. “Negatives Preserved” Additional Copies from the plate from which this picture is taken can be had at any time if desired.

Date: c. 1860

Subject: Woman

Location: Newton, New Jersey

Note: Photo taken at the same studio as the Woman in Plain Silk.

Dress: Perry wears a one-piece dress composed of a bodice attached to a skirt. The fabric is printed with a regular pattern of small flower bunches or geometric shapes in straight rows. The fabric may either be wool or silk or a mix of the two. The drape of the fabric, especially in the sleeve, looks to me like wool.

The bodice is darted and closes at center front with hooks and eyes. Note that the two fronts are poorly matched, indicating that Ms. Perry made this dress herself or hired a less-skilled dressmaker.

The sleeves are wrist-length in a wide sleeve, which may either be classified as a modified pagoda, or an extra-wide two-piece coat sleeve. The sleeve is pleated to fit into the armsyce, and hangs clumsily around the arm.

The skirt is floor-length and appears to be knife-pleated.  The hem is bound with wool tape.

The dress is trimmed with wide box-pleated ruching over the bodice and down the sleeve.  She wears a belt -colored blue in the original photograph- and a watch tucked into the belt, with the fob hanging below.  She is probably wearing undersleeves, though they are not visible, and she wears a narrow flat collar fastened in front with a brooch.

Hair: Her hair is center parted and combed low over the ears.  At about ear level her hair is rolled towards the face slightly, creating just a hint of a puff.  She wears a headdress of decorated hairnet, and drop earrings.

CDV: Woman in Plain Silk

Posted in 1860s, Brooches, CDV, Silk Dresses, women with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 9, 2008 by Alinka Lesbianka
Woman in Plain Silk, c. 1860

CDV: Woman in Plain Silk, c. 1860

Woman in Plain Silk, backmark

CDV: Woman in Plain Silk, backmark

Backmark: I. G. Owen Newton, N.J. “Negatives Preserved” Additional Copies from the plate from which this picture is taken can be had at any time if desired.

Date: c. 1860

Subject: Woman

Location: Newton, New Jersey

Note: This CDV is from the same photography establishment as Kate E. Perry.

Dress: One piece dress composed of bodice and attached skirt.  Most likely silk, with a hint of a woven figure on the chest, although it is difficult to tell if this is an actual jacquard from the photograph.  Numbers of original garments show that delicately figured, single-color silks were common in the early 1860s.

The bodice is darted and closes at center front with hidden hooks and eyes.  Her sleeves are modified pagoda.  Notice how short they are in relation to her wrist.  Sleeve lengths from this period range from over the wrist to nearly at the elbow (though the latter seems to have been mostly a result of remaking old dresses and not having enough fabric).

She wears a very narrow white collar, with the neckline of the dress peeking over, which indicates that the collar is probably just pinned on top of the bodice.  The front closes with a brooch.  She also appears to be wearing a plain belt without a clasp or buckle.

Her skirt is pleated into the bodice with narrow knife-pleats, facing towards center-front.  The skirt is worn over a cage crinoline, and is finished at the hem with a wool tape to prevent wear on the dress fabric.

Hair:  Her hair is center-parted, combed low over the ears, and pinned back into a coil at about the hairline level.  Her hair looks slightly old-fashioned; hairstyles with the greatest width over the ears and ending abruptly near the earlobe was popular in the 1850s.