Pink and Gray Bustle Ensemble
Brief Item Record
Title: Pink and Gray Bustle Ensemble
Date: 1876 (circa)
Description: Pale salmon and gray silk taffeta bustle ensemble, trimmed with pale salmon taffeta ruffles and white and gray tassel trim, swags, bustle, and train; fitted bodice with 3/4 sleeves, square neckline and triple button closure up front; skirt with fullness at back to accommodate bustle, train, pocket in right front of skirt.
Full Item Record
Costume Item Type Metadata
Cataloguer with Date
Center Front Length
Center Back Length
A woman who was able to keep up with current fashions, hire a dressmaker, and afford expensive fabrics in a time of such economic despondency was certainly a moneyed woman. At the end of Peterson's February 1878 etiquette article, the author makes note that, 'No dress is now considered too rich for a large dinner table. But as a true woman should never exceed her means, let her, if she has not the bright, rich dress, wear the best and prettiest she has, brightening it up as well as she can; and with a determination to be amiable and agreeable, she will hold her own with the best dressed at the table.â€
The authors of this broadly distributed magazine realized that not all women could afford a brand new dress, especially one made just for their dinner parties. Times were still tough for Americans in 1878, and few would have been able to afford such fine dresses. These authors were giving etiquette advice to all their readers, most of whom were probably struggling financially. Regardless of income, however, the women of the 1870's were witnessing social changes, as well as significant changes in their clothing, and this dress is an artifact of a changing society.
Researched by Madeleine Boesche â€˜13 and Faren Tang â€˜13Stabilized by Madeleine Boesche â€˜13 and Candace Schuster