Dress for a child

Accession Loan No.
14/1948/2
Collection Class
Clothing and accessories
Common Name
dress for a child
Simple Name
dress
Full Name
child’s dress
Period Classification
Victorian (1837-1901)
Production Date
c 1850
Production Country
United Kingdom: England
Production Area Region
Northern Europe
Production Continent
Europe
Family Group

Material
Wool (worsted); Silk ; Cotton; Silk

    There are 6 comments

    • Shelley Tobin, RAMM Assistant Costume Curator
      22 March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      I’ve seen people do experiments with solar dyes, using things like brambles and onion skins, which turn things a yellowish-brown/gold. You put your dyestuff in a jar with your cloth and leave it in the sun and see what happens.

    • Min from Exeter
      22 March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      I was in a group of mixed race families on a residential trip to look at bird migration in the forest, and we looked at natural dyes. [The children] were fascinated that nettles turned things golden yellow. Some did tie-dying…. Some children’s clothes changed overnight!

    • Shelley Tobin, RAMM Assistant Costume Curator
      22 March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      Cochineal (a beetle), earlier on. In the 1850s, new chemical dyes were available. The first synthetic dye was mauve, or purple. Aniline dyes produced rich purples. Have you heard of Perkin’s mauve? William Perkin was a Glasgow chemist, trying to find byproducts of coaltar. He discovered it accidentally in 1856. Before the 1850s, most dyers used colours derived from natural products…. Recipes were fiercely protected.

    • Min from Exeter
      22 March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      I’m fascinated this is for boys. What would they have worn underneath? What would they have used for dye?

    • Zoe Isopova, housewife and English student
      22 March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      I can’t see my boy wearing that! I also save my children’s first shoes and baby gown and ballet dress….

    • Zoe Isopova, housewife and English student
      22 March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      For a boy? I think it was probably for a quite rich family, handmade. It was very fashionable for its time, used for a special occasion. I’ve never seen anything like it. Typical English. It’s surprising to think that it was for a boy. It’s very very pretty for that time. For me it would be very difficult to understand how people could make it by hand. It might be embroidered by a machine.

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