A visit was arranged to the Hampshire County Museum Service just outside of Winchester. It was a very useful day and a great opportunity to get some primary research looking at the 19th century clothes they had in their collection. The pieces were in very good condition, making it easier to imagine how they were worn in the period. The Museums costume assistant who ran the day was very helpful and knowledgeable and enhanced our experience on the day, being able to answer our questions and providing interesting histories about the clothes and the period.
|1850's corset, had few bones at centre back and was mostly corded. It has a large rigid wooden plate at centre front to help keep shape. I imagine this would have been particularly uncomfortable as the rest of the corset is quite flexible.|
|This corset was thought to be a young women's corset as it is small and only has a slight under bust support. It was a well kept specimen and had delicate lace decoration.|
|1870's corset, this was thought to belong to an more mature lady because of its larger size and being very heavily boned, there was not much of the fabric that did not have a bone channel and it was a particularly heavy undergarment.|
|This bodice had an unusual curved pin tuck front that i thought was particularly interesting with its S shape velvet panels that run down the front. The small pocket at the front for a pocket watch was another delicate feature.|
The shape of the panels can been seen clearly in this bodice which may be useful for my pattern drafting. The decorative elements are quite unusual but really beautiful and i would like to try the panel shapes if they are suitable with what I am producing.
|The emphasised V pelerine on this bodice has the added detail of pin tucks. It is identical front and back with leg-of-mutton sleeves that are separate at the elbow creating a striking difference in volume.|
It is possibly from the 1840s although the V shape bodice was popular through the century. Although it could also be later due to its strong lines of shape and quite controlled mutton sleeve.
|This is another V-shaped pin tucked bodice however the shape of the sleeves give it a very different silhouette. The tight fitting sleeves with the high slightly puffed shoulders suggest it is from later in the century, possible 1880s or 90s. It is interesting to relate the pin tucks on this piece to the blouse I shall be creating for the National Theatre, of which are the same size (5mm). The tiny pin tuck seems to be quite a fashionable technique although I do find its placement on this bodice a bit odd.|
|This type of crinoline appeared in the late 1850's. It was suggested that this would be more of a day-wear crinoline as it is quite short in length. The hoops are made of sprung steel and the tapes a heavy cotton. It has much the basic shape of any crinoline and would have been worn under petticoats which would have softened the steel hoops.|
|This Thompson crinoline shows a different style to the hooping and was again thought to be a day-wear item because of its size and width and the amount of hoops. The Thompson company were popular English makers of crinolines.|
All my images are of garments from the Hampshire County Museum Service's collection, I thank them in being kind enough to assist in my research. http://www3.hants.gov.uk/museum.htm