Period Fashions Victorian Era – (1870-1880)

An era of reasonableness in ladies fashions has returned. The skirts are slimmer, the waists are smaller, the collars are high, and the sleeves are tighter. These are the decades that I drool over the fashions, knowing full well even in my twenties, I didn’t have a waist that small.  The dresses are absolutely gorgeous for the next three decades.  The hoops are gone, and the bustles have made an appearance. It’s the hourglass figure with crushed organs and narrower skirts.

There were morning dresses, afternoon dresses, tea gowns, evening gowns, and ball gowns. The rich changed throughout the day into various fashions, showing their wealth and status by the frocks they wore.  Women who could afford beautiful clothing were delicate in appearance, adorned in silk and lace, and tied up very neatly in tight corsets.  I, on the other hand, run around in blue jeans, blouses, and sneakers all day.  The first thing I do when I get home is strip off my bra.  Comfort is the order of the day in the twenty-first century, while ladies of the past didn’t care how tight they were wound to look like a million while they sought husbands.

Imagine a heroine in that gorgeous red 1875 British ball gown waltzing with the hero in a historical romance novel.  Thanks, again, to the Metropolitan Museum of Arts posting these wonderful fashion creations. (Click on the pictures to enlarge and use the arrows on the right to scroll through the collection.)