Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Competence DVD Extras: Dressing Primrose From the Foundation Up (Gail Carriger's Research Behind the Custard Protocol Series)

The third book in my Custard Protocol series is out now!  This book is set in the mid 1890s and I have concocted a pictorial guide to a possible outfit that a young lady of Prim's rank might wear during this time period.

The images run with what she would need to put on, in order. Ready? Here we go...

On the bottom half:

1. 1890  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

2. 1890s Stockings The Metropolitan Museum of Art

3. 1899 Garters  1899  The Chicago History Museum

4. 1895-1905 Oxfords   The Metropolitan Museum of Art

 Note that shoes have to go on early? Well before the corset and also the rest of the dress for bending and hemming reasons.

Combination  1890s  The Metropolitan Museum of Ar

Combinations are a hard one for me, as an author. Because they were totally UBIQUITOUS undergarments at the time of the Custard Protocol books. They were the most common form of underwear. However, the name and the concept is entirely lost to the modern mind set. Most of my readers would have no basis for comparison should I drop the word "combination" into, for example, a shape change or a nookie scene. I must, therefore, use the word in correct context so as to make it clear that is what the character is wearing. Or have it described to another foriegn character. And yet, it's not something that would be described. So I have to have said foreigner describe it and everyone else get embarrassed. Oh! I like that. Forget I said anything, OK?

On the upper half:

Bust Improvers  1890s  Whitaker Auction

Prim wouldn't need these, but I include them because I think its so fun that they exist at all!

5. Camisol  1895-1905  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

6. 1893  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

7. Sleeve Supports  1890s  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

And over the top:

8. 1895  The Metropolitan Museum of Art
9. 1894 Evening Dress  Charles Fredrick Worth, 1894  The Kyoto Costume Institute

10. 1890s  The Goldstein Museum of Design

11. 1895-1905  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

12. Muff and Hat  1890s  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Alternatively, here's a look at more sporty options...

Stockings  1890s  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Combinations undergarment, England, 1875 - 1900

Corset 1890s Summer Corset   The Victoria & Albert Museu

Corset Cover  1895-1900  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

And sportswear on the outside:

Gym Suit  1895-1899  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Cycling Ensemble  1895  The Kyoto Costume Institute

Shirtwaist 1894 The Museum at FIT _ OMG that dress!

1890s Under The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Travel Suit  Jacques Doucet, 1895  The Victoria & Albert Museum

You don't have to take the pictures as proof. Here's some research to back it up...

Gwen Raverat at the end of the century describes the modest dress of a respectable female.

"Women were incredibly modest . . .  even with each other. You could see a friend in her petticoat, but nothing below that was considered decent. At school, the sidht of a person in her white frilly drawers caused shrieks of outraged virtue; and I should have thought it impossible to be seen downstairs in my dressing-gown."

~ Judith Flanders The Victorian House (pg. 269)

americangothgirl-tumblr Catalog Photographs, Front and Back Views of Woman In Corset, c. 1880s. Albumen Prints

"This is what a young lady wore, with whom I shared a room one night...

  1. Thick, long-legged woolen combinations.
  2. Over them, white cotton combinations, with plenty of buttons and frills.
  3. Very serious, bony, grey stays, with suspenders.
  4. Black woolen stockings.
  5. White cotton drawers, with buttons and frills.
  6. White cotton 'petticoat-bodice', with embroidery, buttons and frills.
  7. Rather short, white flannel, petticoat.
  8. Long alpaca petticoat, with a flounce round the bottom.
  9. Pink flannel blouse.
  10. High, starched, white collar, fastened on with studs.
  11. Navy blue tie.
  12. Blue skirt, touching the ground, and fastened tightly to the blouse with a safety-pin behind.
  13. Leather belt, very tight.
  14. High button boots."
  ~ Judith Flanders The Victorian House (pg. 269)

Undergarments ca. 1900-03  From the FIDM Museum

 1898 Walking Suit, House of Worth, French, Made of silk and lace

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Steampunk, Retro Jewelry, Makeup, Retro Clothes, Lifestyle

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  1. Curious (and this may fall under TMI) did men wear underwear garments at all during this time period? Thanks for the great pictures. Just some awesome museum pieces. I got a kick out of your dilemma of how to describe a "combination" as an author. I had never heard the term, but as I was looking through the pictures I was wondering what it would be called--slip? A slip and chemise? A shift? I'd never have guessed combination. It's lovely. Absolutely beautiful as are most of the layers. That no one ever saw...amazing. Wonderful post.


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