Evening Dress

ca. 1818 (made)
Not currently on display at the V&A

Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

Machine-made net was developed from the late 1760s. It became a popular ground for embroidery and machine-made laces. Its light weight and airy texture suited the simple style of early 19th century women’s dress. This example in black allows for a dramatic contrast when worn over a white under-dress. The applied satin rolls and rosettes at the hem and shoulders were a new decorative trend in women’s dress, which was moving away from the very plain styles of earlier Neo-classical dress. Between 1815 and 1820 the waist was very high, reducing the bodice to narrow strips of fabric at the front and back.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Machine made silk net, embroidered with silk, trimmed with satin decoration, wired epaulettes, hand-sewn
Physical Description
The dress is trimmed at the hem with padded black satin rouleaux and rosettes. The bodice has a low, square neck and fastens at the back with tapes. It is very short-waisted with slight fullness eased in at the front. The gored skirt is attached smoothly except for a wide panel of tight gathering at the back. The epaulettes are wired and, like the cuffs on the long sleeves, made from satin with an applied cord decoration.
Dimensions
  • Centre back length: 107cm
  • Shoulder to hem length: 119cm
  • Waist circumference: 59cm
Credit line
Given by Misses H. and M. Hague
Summary
Machine-made net was developed from the late 1760s. It became a popular ground for embroidery and machine-made laces. Its light weight and airy texture suited the simple style of early 19th century women’s dress. This example in black allows for a dramatic contrast when worn over a white under-dress. The applied satin rolls and rosettes at the hem and shoulders were a new decorative trend in women’s dress, which was moving away from the very plain styles of earlier Neo-classical dress. Between 1815 and 1820 the waist was very high, reducing the bodice to narrow strips of fabric at the front and back.
Collection
Accession Number
T.175-1922

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record createdDecember 15, 1999
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