Archive for belle epoque

Image: Woman with Glasses

Posted in 1900s, young women with tags , , , , on April 5, 2010 by Alinka Lesbianka

Woman with glasses

Backmark: None

Date: c. 1900

Subject: Portrait bust of a woman

Location: Unknown

Dress:  Her clothing is barely visible, but I see a hint of texture around her collarbone area that looks like it could be embroidery.  Something like eyelet, perhaps.  Her high standing collar is probably supported inside with tiny bones of whalebone or zig-zagged wire.

Accessories:  There is a tiny brooch at her throat.  Unusually, she is wearing glasses.  I don’t know if the dearth of images of women wearing glasses is because few women wore them or because most took them off for their photograph.  But these are adorable- wire rimmed and oval shaped.

Hair:  Her hair is center parted and probably combed over a pad of some kind.  Her hair has a somewhat awkward shape, but picture it with one of the magnificent hats of the period and you will understand the reason for it.

Cabinet Card: Girl in First Communion dress

Posted in 1900s, cabinet cards, girls, Special Occasion with tags , , , , , , , , on April 4, 2010 by Alinka Lesbianka

Girl in First Communion dress

Backmark:  None.  Front reads “Conrad Magnus Photo Artist Hoboken N.J.”

Date: c. 1900

Subject: Seated Girl, full length

Location: Hoboken, N.J.

Note: This is another period that I don’t know much about; ditto for first communion clothes.  Feel free to help me out!

Dress:  She wears a light dotted dress, it could be a silk or cotton.  It is semi-sheer, and the dots may be printed in another light color.  The skirt is ruched around her hips, and cut in a slight trumpet shape.  The hem is accentuated with a tuck about 2″ in depth.  If she were standing, the skirt would probably reach to her lower calf.

The bodice has a yoke that is pleated.  Many dresses from this period had tucked (sewn-down pleats) yokes, but this one does not appear to have sewn pleats.  The bodice is full at her front ribcage, which is characteristic of this period.  There is a faux-berthe lace collar that spreads over her shoulders and helps give a smooth line to the fullness in the front bodice.  The short standing collar is sheer and edged in lace.  A woman’s collar from this period would have reached all the way to the top of the neck and been supported by small bones.

Note the hint of a bow at the nape of her neck.

The sleeves are full, ending in a band just below her elbow.  There is lace tacked to the band, a sartorial remnant of the washable, detachable cuffs that women had been wearing for most of the 19th century.

Accessories: she wears long, white gloves with pin-tucks at the back of the hand.  Note the bracelet worn over her left glove.  There is also a tiny brooch at her throat.

Hair: Her hair is pulled up into a fashionable top-knot and finished with a ribbon and flowers.  The flowers are probably specific to the occasion (her first communion?  I am bad at judging ages.  Maybe her confirmation.)

Cabinet Card: Boy with curls

Posted in cabinet cards, men with tags , , , , , on April 3, 2010 by Alinka Lesbianka

Boy with curls

Boy with curls, backmark

Backmark: L. T. White Photographic Art Studio 105 Fourth Ave., Bet. 11th & 12th Sts., NEW YORK.  Duplicates can be had at any time.

Date: Late 19th c.

Subject: Portrait bust of a boy

Location: New York, NY

Note: I don’t know much of anything about boy’s/men’s wear for this period, so I’m not going to write anything.  If a visitor to the site wants to fill me in, please do!

Cabinet Card: Young Woman from Brooklyn, 1890s

Posted in 1890s, cabinet cards, young women with tags , , , , , , on July 21, 2009 by Alinka Lesbianka

Girl from Brooklyn, 1890s

Cabinet Card: Young Woman from Brooklyn, 1890s

Backmark: None (Front reads “Ehm Artist 708 & 710 Broadway, Brooklyn, N.Y.)

Date: c. 1892-1896

Subject: Portrait Bust of a Young Woman

Location: Brooklyn, N.Y.

Dress: This is a beautiful example of the popular dress style c. 1895.  The dress is made of a light figured cotton or silk printed with floral sprays.  The sleeves are very full, with the fullness extending past the elbows.  The sleeves may be held out with separate sleeves filled with down or shaped by whalebones, or they may be puffed with pleatings of crinoline.   The extra-wide collar of eyelet embroidery extends to the end of the shoulder point and is typical of the mid 1890s.

The bodice is drawn tightly into a waistband at the true waistline and covered with a wide ribbon belt.  This bodice shape is particular to the early-to-mid 1890s.

Ribbon bows draw attention to the shoulders and the center-front neck.

Hair: This young woman still wears her hair in an adolescent style; slightly curled at the sides and center-parted as was typical of an adult style, but drawn back into a low ponytail tied with a ribbon.  Adult women would have confined their hair in a bun at the back of the head.

Photograph: Woman with Sword Pin, c. 1895

Posted in 1890s, cabinet cards, women with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on December 27, 2008 by Alinka Lesbianka
Woman with Sword Pin, c. 1895

Photograph: Woman with Sword Pin, c. 1895

Backmark: None

Date:. c. 1895

Subject: Woman Seated

Location: Unknown

Note: This looks like a photograph of a Cabinet Card.

Dress: This woman wears a two-piece dress with large leg-o’-mutton sleeves. The bodice is fitted over a corset with tucks radiating up from CF/waist. The bodice closes at center front with hooks and eyes. The sleeves are typical of the mid 1890s. They may be supported inside with horsehair fabric or pleated buckram lining the sleeve, or a separate set of sleeve cages or pillows.

An enormous eyelet collar fans out from her neck and over the sleeves. The dress is finished with a high standing collar, bows at the shoulder, and trim at the waist made of velvet. A tiny sword pin pierces the front of the collar.

Hair: She wears her hair swept back, with small curls framing her forehead. A small comb holds the sides of her hair back, she probably has a matching one on the other side of her head.

The hat is typical of the 1890s. It rests directly on top of the head and level, and adds height with bows and feathers. Feather use in clothing and accessories reached a peak in the 1880s and 1890s. Entire birds (and other small animals) adorned hats and became fans. The straight, spiky plumes in this woman’s hat may be from one of any number of exotic birds, but are probably egret.