Skating Ensemble | c. 1863
Sarah Campbell by Sir Joshua Reynolds | c. 1777
OBSESSED with these sleeves atm.
Erté | Costume for Ganna Walska as Flora in “Tosca” | c. 1920
Evening Dress | c. 1866
This is a typical example of a dress in the crinoline silhouette with its volume concentrated on the back side, like it was popular in the mid-1860s. The apron-shaped overskirt equally accentuates the back side. While the diameter of the skirt measures approximately 150cm from front to behind, the overall circumference spans around 470cm.
In France, during the Second Empire (1852-1870) under the authoritarian rule of Napoleon III (1808-1873) and the impact of economic growth caused by modernization, the luxury goods industry, including fashion, greatly progressed. There are plenty of examples for this tendency, for instance the application of delicate lace or elaborate trimming decorations on crinoline dresses, with the crinoline style already in itself demanding abundant usage of cloth. On the frequently held formal ceremonies, balls or large-scale events like the International Expositions, women of the wealthy classes competed with each other for the most sumptuous dresses as well as the numbers of them they owned.
Evening Dress | c. 1855
This dress might be termed a typical example of the delicate, alluring and womanly style of the 1850s. The décolleté is kept wide, and short sleeves cover the slender shoulders. To accentuate the small waistline, the seam edges at the waist narrow downwards as well as the skirt gracefully widens its shape. The triple-flounced design creates a decorative effect and further emphasizes the slightly rounded contour. Blended fabric of silk and wool in fact is hard to print on. The bright colors of this dress give prove of the rapid progress in cloth printing techniques that had been achieved.