That’s my 1850s striped cotton morning dress which I’ve sewn some years ago.
The dress is completely sewn by hand!
It took me 53 hours and 45 minutes to sew the dress with all those ruffles and flounces!
I used a sturdy cotton fabric with woven stripes in taupe and white. The small white stripes are woven with a thicker yarn, so the fabric has a ribbed surface. For the whole dress I needed about 6 meter of that fabric and about 100 meter of cotton and linen sewing thread.
As 1850s dresses often had, my dress has pagoda sleeves, which are embellished with two flounces.
Pagoda sleeves can be worn with or without engageantes (false undersleeves). Here I’m wearing the dress without undersleeves because it was a hot summer day.
Because it’s a morning dress, I left the bodice unboned.
The bodice is pointed in front. Dresses with a pointed bodice were fashionable in the 1840s and 1850s.
The dress is closed in front with hook and eyes.
The bodice and the skirt of my dress are separate, as mid-Victorian dresses usually were.
The dress has princess seams at the back, and sloped shoulder seams which are characteristic for Victorian dresses.
Beneath the cotton bodice I’m wearing the bodice of my 1850s white muslin and valenciennes lace summer dress.
The skirt has three flounces.
The foundation skirt, where the flounces are attached, is made of the same striped cotton fabric; the skirt is slightly longer at the back than in the front. The width of the three flounces are: 4,5m (the top flounce), 4,8m (the middle flounce) and 5,2m (the bottom flounce).
‘I found an apple. Can I have it?’ 😉
Victorian cotton morning dresses were usually plainer, without all such ruffles and flounces, so they could be easier washed and ironed. (I actually sewed this dress as a prototype for an 1850s white silk ballgown, that’s why this cotton dress has all these ruffles. 😉 ) But a wealthy lady may wear even such a flouncy morning dress, as the following links of extant flounced cotton dresses show.
My inspiration for this dress: pretty 1860s beige printed cotton dress with flounces and pagoda sleeves, early Victorian cotton print dress with flounced skirt, pretty ca. 1848 sand-colored pinstriped cotton dress with ruffles and tiered sleeves, 1850s beige and brown striped cotton dress with flounced skirt and tiered sleeves, and a ca. 1855 printed blue cotton dress with ruffled sleeves and skirt.
And some pictures of mid-Victorian striped day dresses: ca. 1855 white and beige horizontal striped cotton dress with tiered skirt, ca. 1862 brown and white striped linsey-woolsey day dress, and another 1860s striped maternity dress.