Mid-Victorian Striped Cotton Morning Dress

Mid-Victorian Striped Cotton Morning Dress

That’s my 1850s striped cotton morning dress which I’ve sewn some years ago.

victorian hand sewn cotton day dress

The dress is completely sewn by hand!

1850s hand sewn day dress

It took me 53 hours and 45 minutes to sew the dress with all those ruffles and flounces!

striped cotton morning dress flounce detail

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.

1850s dress pagoda sleeves

As 1850s dresses often had, my dress has pagoda sleeves, which are embellished with two flounces.

civil war print striped morning dress without engageantes

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.

victorian unboned bodice morning dress

Because it’s a morning dress, I left the bodice unboned.

1850s pointed bodice dress

The bodice is pointed in front. Dresses with a pointed bodice were fashionable in the 1840s and 1850s.

1850s dress hook and eye closure

The dress is closed in front with hook and eyes.

1850s cotton print day dress

The bodice and the skirt of my dress are separate, as mid-Victorian dresses usually were.

mid victorian dress princess seams

The dress has princess seams at the back, and sloped shoulder seams which are characteristic for Victorian dresses.

victorian white muslin summer dress blouse bodice
One of the last bellflowers

Beneath the cotton bodice I’m wearing the bodice of my 1850s white muslin and valenciennes lace summer dress.

mid-victorian flounced cotton dress
Skirt flounces and dog

1850s flounce dress

The skirt has three flounces.

civil war flounce dress

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).

1850s ruffle dress

‘I found an apple. Can I have it?’ 😉

1860s ruffle dress victorian morning dress

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.

1850s beige pinstriped day dress

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.

1850s hand sewn flounced print cotton morning dress

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.

mid-victorian white taupe striped cotton work dress

And three photographs of Victorian women wearing striped dresses: 1860s striped work dress, 1860s carte de visite, and another civil war era CDV.

1850s dress with light and shadow
Light and shadow

victorian carrickmacross lace cap blue ribbons

Because an 1850s lady usually covers her hair in the morning, I’m wearing my Carrickmacross lace day cap.

1850s 1860s underwear flounced petticoats

Underneath the dress I’m wearing: my chemise, drawers, calico petticoats, my Victorian corset, my starched petticoat, my flounced petticoat, white cotton lace knit stockings, and black leather boots.

1850s lace day cap day dress photograph

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