Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Lavender Stripes

Those who know me know with no explanation why I love this dress so much. For those of you who don't yet know me very well, I'm rather fond of the color purple.

Okay, so that's an understatement. Purple and its many variations is the best color on earth. Period.

Another reason I love this dress is because I have an 1830's dress custom made for me out of this exact fabric. Right down to the width of the stripes. I'm even going to guess this fabric is polished cotton, like me. Gorgeous to look at, torture to wear in the Deep South in any month besides January and February. This particular dress is French and dated to 1867.

I want to point out the draping on the front of the skirt. This is classic first bustle era. The front of the skirt became an artist's canvas and could sometimes get pretty crazy.

It's not often I come across a dress from this era with a front and side/back view. Again, on the back here you can see how the fabric is bunched up at the top, decorated with a bow, and is beginning to go crazy with ruffles. As the first bustle era progressed and then segued into the natural form era, seamstresses sometimes went NUTS with ruffles. I mean nuts.

The white between the stripes has faded to cream. Which was probably the cotton's original color. Bolls of cotton fresh off the plant are truly white, but once you start processing it it doesn't stay white. All the oils it comes into contact with from human skin builds up on the fibers and turns it cream.

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