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Wedding dress and petticoat

  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain, Uk (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1851 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    unknown (production)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Cotton muslin lined with linen, and sleeves trimmed with bobbin lace

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mrs Bessie Miller

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Fashion, room 40, case CA5, shelf FIG2

Physical description

White cotton muslin dress and cotton petticoat.
[Dress] White cotton muslin dress trimmed with ruffles of the same fabric. High round neck, front fastening bodice and medium full sleeves, cut on the straight flat pleated at the head, and gathered at the wrist band which fastens with a brass hook and worked eye. The shape is a medium full 'Bishop' sleeve. The bodice waist is at natural level with a slight point at the centre front. It opens down the centre front and the material is cut full to drape down to the waist where it is gauged just above the waist. There is a similar panel of gauging at the centre back. The skirt is tightly pleated. From knee level it is trimmed with six narrow frills. Neck and shoulder seams and frill headings are faced. The bodice is lined with linen which fastens in the centre front with brass hooks with worked eyes. It is well made, hand stitched and the tackings remain on the back bodice seams. There are short inner sleeves trimmed with bobbin lace.
[Petticoat] Full body petticoat of plain white cotton twill. The bodice is cut low necked with short sleeves, and the skirt is full and gathered. Designed to be worn under a sheer overdress. Full length with a low round neck, back fastening bodice and slightly pointed front waist, a centre front seam and is darted to fit. It has an inserted waistband to which the skirt is attached to organ pleats. There is a tuck above the hem. The sleeves are narrow, plain and just above elbow length. It fastens at the back with self covered cotton buttons. At the waist is a white tape which slots through a worked loop and may then be passed through to the front waist to adjust and tie. There is another tape inserted through the back facing of the neck to adjust this fitting. Neck and sleeved edges are faced, and it is hand stitched.

Place of Origin

Great Britain, Uk (made)


ca. 1851 (made)


unknown (production)

Materials and Techniques

Cotton muslin lined with linen, and sleeves trimmed with bobbin lace

Object history note

The dress and petticoat are associated with a horsehair lace bonnet (T.366-1988). The ensemble is linked with the marriage of Eliza Sneath to Joseph Candlin in Sheffield in 1851.

However, the petticoat does not correspond with the overdress, as the sleeves are too long for the lace-trimmed lining of the dress bodice and would hide the detail of the lace edging on the lining. It is a nice and rare example of an utilitarian full petticoat of the period.

Descriptive line

Cotton wedding dress and petticoat, made in England, ca. 1851


Cotton (textile); Linen (material)


Plain weave; Bobbin lace making; Lined


Marriage; Fashion; Women's clothes; Lace; Europeana Fashion Project

Collection code


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