Day Dress

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Woman in Fan Front 1854

This photo is dated March 1854 on a slip of paper held between the pages of the book on the table.

The lady wears a fan front dress with tightly fitting drop sleeves. She has a small gold and gem brooch holding the embroidered net lace collar closed at the throat. She wears a shiny-fabric apron, likely a silk taffeta - you can just see her dress skirt at the far left of the picture. The apron does not have a bib section. She wears no ring on her left hand.

Postmortem Boy with Mother


This mother posed with her dead son for this portrait. We know this is a boy because his hair is parted on both sides. We know he is dead because his eyes are closed.

He wears a cotton print frock with front buttons and flounced sleeves. The clothing is poorly arranged on him, which suggests the difficulty of dressing him for this photo. The top of his left boot is visible.

Girl in summer dress


This cased image shows a girl wearing a loose summer dress. the sleeve cap shows elaborate fabric decoration. The bodice is gathered at both neckline and waist. Her hair is parted in center and swopt back without curls.

Boy in fan-front dress


This boy's portrait is a fine example of an 1850's fan front dress for a child. The boat neck is edged in a lace or ribbon trim, as is the sleeve. The pattern shows that the sleeve is cut on bias. There are three rows of trim at the end of the sleeve. The boy wears his hair in ring curls of moderate length, but it is still parted on the side, showing that this is a boy child.

Girl with doll


Tinting of this photo shows a purple dress on the little girl and a pink dress on her doll.

The girl has a fan-front dress with a boat neck edged with lace. Her short sleeves have lace edging as well. Her skirt has some trim applied at mid-thigh. She wears petticoats that provide some spring to the skirt, holding it out on the side while seated.

Her low shoes are fastened with a strap around the ankle. She wears socks extending to mid-calf.

Sisters in plaid


These two wealthy sisters appear to be from the 1860s. They are wearing identical dresses cut from the same bolt of silk plaid.

The dresses have an elaborately cut flounce on the skirt. They appear to be worn with a small hoop skirt. The detailing on the bodice is unusual, with saw-tooth edges that are overcast. Embroidered cuff details are apparent. The dresses have thin band collars.

The girls are wearing rather high boots with black button side closures and white stockings.

Two Sisters

Two SistersTwo Sisters
These girls are most likely sisters. They are well-fed and carefully dressed. They both wear frocks with boat necks.

The little girl on the right has heavily curled long hair, parted in the middle. Her striped dress has flounced short sleeves, and a contrasting set of flounces to the skirt. Her lace pantalettes peak out below the hem of the skirt. Her stockings may be silk. They are wrinkling at the lower legs and ankles. Her shoes have contrasting uppers that are button fastened at the sides.

Three Sisters


These sisters are wearing dresses made from the same bolt of plaid cloth. The girl on the right shows lace pantalettes. The girl in the center wears a coral bead necklace. The girl on the left has long curled hair. Traces of tinting are present on the girl's cheeks.

Summer Gown 1850

Cotton print fan-front two-piece day dress from 1850s or perhaps 1860s.

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