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Waistcoat

  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1745 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Silk quilted and bound with grosgrain silk ribbon and braid, with boned canvas

  • Museum number:

    T.87-1978

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Women’s waistcoats were usually sleeveless like a man’s waistcoat, but shorter and shaped to fit over stays. Worn with a petticoat and bedgown, a waistcoat formed part of the informal ensemble of women’s dress. It could be worn under a gown to provide extra warmth. This waistcoat is made of silk quilted in a diaper pattern. Bright yellow was a popular colour for women’s dress from the 1740s to the 1770s. Quilting was a common type of needlework in the 18th century, as it was both decorative and practical. It can also be seen on petticoats and gowns. This waistcoat has a matching pair of pockets.

Physical description

Waistcoat made of yellow silk and quilted in a diaper pattern, bound with yellow grosgrain silk ribbon. The centre back is reinforced with a strip of linen. It is hip length, collarless and sleeveless with a centre front eyelet fastening shaped to the waist with overlapping, rounded hip basques. The neck is bound with matching silk braid and the eyelets are faced with matching silk. The bodice is internally stiffened with five boned canvas panels, inside fronts and at the side and centre back seams. This waistcoat is part of an ensemble with a matching pair of quilted yellow silk pockets (see T.87A&B-1978).

Place of Origin

England (made)

Date

ca. 1745 (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Silk quilted and bound with grosgrain silk ribbon and braid, with boned canvas

Object history note

Historical significance: This is an example of a woman's waistcoat, which was sleeveless like a man's waistcoat, but shaped to fit over stays. Women's waistcoats were worn informally with a petticoat and bedgown. They could also be worn to provide extra warmth under a gown

Descriptive line

Woman's waistcoat of quilted yellow silk, England, ca. 1745

Materials

Silk; Silk thread; Grosgrain; Linen

Techniques

Hand sewing; Quilting

Categories

Fashion; Women's clothes; Europeana Fashion Project

Collection

Textiles and Fashion Collection

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