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Bodice

Unknown1840/1849

The Victoria and Albert Museum

The Victoria and Albert Museum

The 1840s saw the beginning of a long transition period between pockets as separate garments and those sewn into women’s clothes, when dressmakers began sewing pockets into skirt seams. But it is clear from surviving examples, paintings and literature that many women continued to wear separate pockets.

This is the type of pocket we are familiar with today, one intended to be part of a garment. It forms one piece of an unpicked dress of the 1840s. The glazed cotton pocket is lined along the opening with the green silk of the dress, so that it would show when the pocket is used.

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Details

  • Title: Bodice
  • Creator: Unknown
  • Date Created: 1840/1849
  • Location: Great Britain
  • Physical Dimensions: Diameter: 61 cm waist, Width: 43.5 cm shoulder to shoulder, Length: 32.3 cm front of neck to waist point, Width: 37.5 cm bust, front
  • Provenance: Given anonymously
  • Medium: Woven silk-satin lined with glazed cotton, whalebone support, machine stitched

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