1830s Outerwear Victorian Dress

Pelisses were made to fit the shape exactly and were usually closed from the throat to the feet with buttons or decorative fastenings increasing in size as they descend. Deep epaulettes often fell as low as a half-sleeve and continued behind to meet at the back of the belt. They were trimmed with fur, velvet, or fancy fringe. It was popular to supply the place of a collar on the pelisse by a black collar and white chemissite or a ruff.

At times the sleeves of the pelisse were exceedingly full at the top, and as tight as possible at the lower part of the arm, nearly to the elbow. The sleeves were cut in one continued piece without separation at the elbow. The belt, usually the color of the garment, was very broad and fastened with a gold buckle.

The violet-colored pelisse above is made very plain and fastens imperceptibly down the front of the skirt under a simple rouleau. The body is made to fit close to the shape and is confined round the waist by a belt fastened in front by a gold buckle. The sleeves are finished with worked muslin or blonde ruffles and turned back to the arm. Broad black velvet bands with gold buckles supply the place of bracelets. A black velvet pelerine is added to this pelisse with a double row of rich fringe and is confined down the front by small gold buttons. The pelerine is finished at the throat by a triple ruff of fine lace.

Besides the pelisse there were cloaks, long and flowing, which were much worn for driving and at the opera. By the 1830s, cloaks were made of every kind of stripe and plaid from figured velvet to merinos. The most established form was that of a deep full cape over a very full cloak, both simply gathered round the throat, having the exact appearance of a short petticoat over a long one. For carriage and opera dress cloaks were often lined with plush, and exquisitely embroidered as shown above.

This cloak is of fine cashmere of a drab color and is embroidered with silk in a pattern of blue-bells or single hyacinths and finished round the edge by a rouleau of satin. A double pelerine cape falls over the shoulder. The cloak is lined throughout with blue satin and a triple ruff of lace is worn round the throat. The hat is of black velvet ornamented with matching bows and three aigrettes. The aigrettes consist of dark purple crocuses with grass like foliage.

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