Silk dress with silk braid and beads, designer unknown

Silk dress with silk braid and beads, designer unknown

Dress
Designer unknown
Great Britain
About 1862
Silk trimmed with silk braid and beads, lined with glazed cotton, edged with brush braid, hand-sewn
Given by Miss Edith Westbrook
Museum no. T.222-1969

By the 1860s, skirts had reached their fullest point. They were worn over wire ‘cage crinolines’, which gave maximum volume with minimum weight. This dress illustrates the style of the early 1860s. It has only a slightly pointed waist and a sleeve wide at the elbow, but narrow at the wrist. The puffed epaulettes at the top of the sleeves indicate historical influences, particularly the 16th century. They would have been seen in early English portraits.