As promised, here’s the first post of a series to share some of the objects that are candidates for our 5-day intensive stabilization workshop with Colleen Callahan, coming up in April.

From 1984.001

Here are some notes about this object:

This ivory silk taffeta bustle dress, trimmed with lace and satin ribbon, was worn by Sallie Tucker Blake at Vassar’s commencement exercises of 1879.

Bustled Bodice of ivory satin; fitted; with 3/4 length sleeves; lace ruffle trim at collar and down CF and cuffs;

Skirt of ivory satin; panel of lace at front, fullness at back to accommodate bustle; attached bustle drape of satin and lace buttons over CB; slight trim

Cape of ivory satin; fringe trim along CF opening edges, hemline, and edge of collar; back panels cut on the bias, diagonal striped pattern picked out

Small round buttons covered with off white crocheted trim
Straight seams machine sewn, all else = hand sewn
Thin pads of cotton batting at front edge of armscye,
Patches of jersey with pinched edges under arms
Approx. 6” wide stiff muslin (?) inside hem
Separate underskirt of dark tan polished cotton and overskirt of satin
Long hanging wide satin ribbon trim on skirt back to right of bustle (hanging almost to hem)
Silk twill tape to finish edges of inside seams

Condition issues: stain on front bodice; lace ripping on skirt, tears at center back near waist over bustle

Scroll down to see a slideshow of images of this object.

Should we stabilize this garment and exhibit it? Please leave a comment and weigh in!