Victorian Fashion

March 24, 2006

Last week I was browsing through Dover Publication’s online catalog of goodies when I came across a book and CD of Victorian fashions. Well, somehow one of those same books ended up in my mailbox this week and I was able to do a little more browsing.

How ornate the fashions were; ruffles and ribbons, trims and buttons, fringe and lace, flowers and beads , veils and feathers and balloon sleeves and bustles. I probably don’t know the names for half of the decorative devices that they used.

I think had I lived during that time period, I would have wanted to have been a dressmaker. It seems it would have been very similar to what quilting is today; playing with beautiful fabrics and embellishments.

The nagging question in my mind, though, is, “Is it physically possible to have a waist that small?” In my case, I know it is highly improbable, but is it even possible?



  1. The perfect “hour-glass” figure, huh? The illustration has an element of fantasy about it — like commercials where everything is airbrushed, and you think you can be 65 with skin like a 20 year old. !?! A corset would have killed me; I’d never have survived that torture.

  2. I’m thinking I would have been a scullery maid during this time…so as not to worry about the corset! My girls like to tease each other when they are curling their hair by quoting Cinderella’s stepmother as she was tightening the corset on one of her “ugly” daughters. “Beauty knows NO PAIN, girls!”

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