Printed cotton velveteen day dress, 1850s
I fell in love with this charming dress at first sight because the fabric is so special. Over years of collecting, I have found few printed velveteens from this period. Not only is the fabric rare, but the richness of color is compellingly beautiful.
The minor alteration was done long ago, perhaps to make it better fit the second owner. A narrow strip of fabric was probably removed from the center-back seam of the skirt and used to make the long narrow sleeves a little bit wider.
Also, the bodice was taken in at the side seams. The minor changes are acceptable because they do not compromise the original style of the dress. Maintenance of design integrity and the rare fabric make our charming period dress a great buy for the serious collector. In Excellent condition, it would sell at $1300-$1400.
The dress is mostly handsewn. The bodice is boned and lined with cream-colored cotton canvas. It closes in back with hooks. The shoulder seams, neckline, cuffs and waistline seam are finished with narrow corded piping. The hem of the cartridge pleated skirt is faced with brown glazed cotton.
The condition is almost excellent. The pile of the velveteen is slight worn under the arms.
It measures: 32", 24" waist, and 52" from shoulder to hem.