|Date||1878 - 1882|
Two-piece day outfit. Satin skirt, in solid cranberry / burgandy color, with coordinating paisley stripe silk jacket. Jacket colors include pink, beige, cream, and white. Bustle and ribbons are dark burgundy silk satin.
Garment is both machine-and hand-stitched. Bodice is ‘princess polonaise’ style, with center front buttoned opening, contrasting fabric collar and long sleeves. The fourteen buttonholes on the right front are hand-worked. Right and left bodice fronts extend into lined, bow-trimmed overskirt panels. The unlined pleated back overskirt panel is draped to form a bustle by pleating the lower and side edges and attaching them to an interior cartridge-pleated muslin foundation. Attachment is by tacking stitches (at sides) and supportive fabric strips tacked to the interior waistline and lower edges of the bustle panel. A large bow is stitched through all layers at bodice center back. Sleeves have lace trim at cuffs. Interior waistband has bras hook and eye closure. Side and front seams and darts are stiffened with baleen, which is visible at lower edge of right side seam. The skirt is made of satin, with layers of pleats, in a solid cranberry / burgandy color. Skirt waist is 24.75-inches around, the center front length is 40.5"; center back length is 40.5"; hem circumference is 78.5".
No dressmaker label on garment, but handwritten on interior belt: "1882". A paper ID tag reads "One of the first dresses of India Forilland imported by Arnold Constable & Co. / 1878 / Bessie Van W. McKee"
Bessie Pardee Van Wickle McKee