1880s going away dress outside

1880s going away dress outside

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This entry is part of 23 in the series Carondelet Historical Society Project

The weather was SO pretty outside that we decided to go take some fashion photos at Carondelet Park. The boathouse at Carondelet Park, although originally built in 1918, and the concrete pergolas (built in the 1930s), made for perfect a perfect set to go with this 150+ year old 1880s bustle dress.

Even without the proper corset, slips, petticoats, maybe a bustle cage and other foundation garments, this 1885 dress still came to life. The 1880s were the time of steamboats and elaborate bustle fashions! She looks like she just stepped out of a mid 1880s fashion plate!

Going through these pictures, a few years later, fills me with the same sense of awe that I had during shooting this dress. Everything that day worked out perfectly, and although my model Tiffany was probably tired, neither of us wanted to stop.

I was so scared of damaging the dress, and I was so grateful to get to photograph such a well preserved piece of 1880s St. Louis history!

I was inspired to create a cool piece of Photoshop art while going through the pictures from this photoshoot. I found the perfect 1880s steamboat photo to replace the lake and early 1900s houses that were in the original image. I’ve posted my process photos. The back doesn’t match the front in toning, because by the time it got to THAT point, my eyes were totally blurring and I was tired of looking at it all.

See how this dress shows the latest mid-1880s bustle fashions:

Series Navigation1880s tea gown and going away outfit >>

About The Author

Jessica Kay Murray

Professional WordPress nerd. Lover of all things older than me. I am fascinated by early 1900s labor and feminist history, and have a sporadic addiction to reading nonfiction about those things on Archive.org. I scan old photographs and ephemera when I get really super bored. On Etsy I sell vintage clothing that I got as part of an interesting trade deal a few years ago.

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