Rare 1875 Victorian Heavily Beaded Silk Faille Mourning Dress
Mourning fashion came into being following the death of Great Britain's Prince Albert in 1861. His wife, Queen Victoria, went into a deep mourning and depression and wore her widow's weeds until her death in 1901.
Members of the lower classes, looking to emulate this proper and royal etiquette, adopted the queen's mourning traditions and hence Victorian mourning fashion came into being.
Given the extended duration of which Victorian mourning clothing was worn, it is becoming increasingly rare to find such exquisite wearable pieces such as this. This two-piece set is fabulous example of beauty and high-quality craftsmanship that went into a widow's weeds.
Fashioned in a heavy silk faille, the bodice is fully boned, has a cinched waist and is adorned with beautiful black glass seed bead work in a floral motif flocking either side of the buttons and wrapping around the collar. A row of heavy glass beads fastens bodice down the center front. It has puffed shoulders that taper to a fitted sleeve with grosgrain ribbon and bow details on the upper arm. Matching black bead work also adorns the cuffs. The back of the bodice tapers at the center with petite pleats. Two beaded panels are found on either side.
The bustle skirt is very heavy and comes without the bustle, but is still wearable. It has knife pleating on the back and petite knife pleated trim around the entire bottom of the skirt.
Comes with a note from the original owner's family dating the piece and stating who it belonged to.
Seven of the buttons have been replaced. One of the button holes has ripped and needs to be repaired. THere are a few loose beads. The bustle skirt is beginning to shred at the waistband due to the weight. Bodice collar is starting to shred at top. Priced accordingly.
Please view our Condition Chart for additional information.