Petticoat

ca. 1860 (made)
Petticoat thumbnail 1
Petticoat thumbnail 2
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images
Not currently on display at the V&A

Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This feather-filled petticoat was multi-purpose. It created enough bulk to support the dome-shaped skirts of the fashionable 1860s silhouette, and provided plenty of warmth without adding too much weight.

The brightly coloured paisley design was used for petticoats and other accessories such as handkerchieves. Indian influences can be seen in the tear-drop 'buta' motifs which are printed on a red ground in blue, green, yellow and black. The bright red vegetable dye is based on madder and became known as Turkey or Adrianople red. It was a popular print, and with improved production methods, became readily affordable. Goose down was also plentiful and inexpensive.
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read The bottom line: underwear revealed Ever wondered about the story behind your underwear? Modesty laws, changing fashions, and a desire for comfort have all influenced the design of underwear over time. From the 'porno chic' bra, to the somewhat warmer padded petticoat, take a rummage through our collection and find everythin...
object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Printed cotton, goose down, machine-sewn, lined with cotton
Brief Description
Petticoat of printed cotton filled with goose down, made by Booth & Fox, London, ca. 1860
Physical Description
Petticoat of printed cotton filled with goose down. Constructed from five 'A'-shaped panels machine-sewn together, lined with a plain red cotton then stitched to form eight tubular sections from hem to hip. The top section is left unfilled and pleated into a waistband, but each of the eight tubular sections is filled with feathers and down for padding. The design consists of a red ground with a 'paisley' design of cones interspersed with flowers in green, yellow, blue and black. There is an opening at the centre back seam.
Dimensions
  • Waist at button position measured inside garment circumference: 81cm (Note: Measured by Conservation)
  • Waist of hem length: 34in
  • Hem circumference: 86in
  • Waist at drawstring position circumference: 68cm (Note: Measured by Conservation)
  • Waist hem length: 77cm (Note: Measured by Conservation)
Production typeMass produced
Marks and Inscriptions
'BOOTH & FOX / ARCTIC GOOSE DOWN SKIRTS / 36". Fast colours. Wash with down in. Shake when drying.' (Label attached in waistband)
Gallery Label
A thermal petticoat Underwear has always helped keep us warm in cold weather. This colourfast printed cotton petticoat is filled with down. It is both warm and light. Its bulk also helped to support the voluminous skirts fashionable for women in the mid 19th century. Petticoat Booth & Fox Britain, London, and Ireland, Cork, 1860s Printed cotton, lined with cotton and filled with Arctic goosedown V&A: T.212-1962 Given by Mrs I. Gadsby-Toni(16/04/2016-12/03/2017)
Credit line
Given by Mrs I. Gadsby-Toni
Summary
This feather-filled petticoat was multi-purpose. It created enough bulk to support the dome-shaped skirts of the fashionable 1860s silhouette, and provided plenty of warmth without adding too much weight.



The brightly coloured paisley design was used for petticoats and other accessories such as handkerchieves. Indian influences can be seen in the tear-drop 'buta' motifs which are printed on a red ground in blue, green, yellow and black. The bright red vegetable dye is based on madder and became known as Turkey or Adrianople red. It was a popular print, and with improved production methods, became readily affordable. Goose down was also plentiful and inexpensive.
Collection
Accession Number
T.212-1962

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record createdNovember 14, 2006
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