Winters Past

20th Century Fashion from Deco to Disco

Victorian Finery

Last week was a  stellar one for vintage hunting. Among other things, I was lucky to find a dozen Victorian undergarments, all in the softest cotton and all white.

antique Victorian chemises

antique Victorian treasures

The Victorians, bless their repressed hearts, actually knew a thing or two about seduction.  Like slowly unwrapping a glorious gift, getting undressed was such a slow, laborious process that one would think it heightened their anticipation.

These garments were worn in strict order underneath one’s actual clothing. The first layer next to the skin was a pair of bloomers or pantaloons. Then came a chemise, which was either a loose cotton top or gown. Next was the corset, then one or two petticoat skirts or a crinoline over a hoop skirt. Then, at long last, the dress. Can you, in your yoga pants and flip flops, imagine wearing all that?

Those Victorians did not stint on embellishing the layers that went under their clothing. There are pin tucks, pleats and all manner of hand made lace.

antique Victorian chemises

These pieces are far to pretty to hide under other clothes! While some are more obviously night gowns, others are great as dresses.

antique Victorian chemises

Author: Winters Past

I am a vintage clothing shop owner living and working in rural north Florida. I believe in adding a little vinegar and molasses to my greens, having my coffee outside whenever possible, and mixing something vintage into every room and every outfit.

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