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October 01, 2010

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Catfishes

So that is what Amelia Peabody is referring to in the novels featuring that character!

MrsCMJ

Excellent information here!
So, I’ve seen instances of petticoats and corsets from 1860s on in a variety of colors, but I have not seen chemises (regular or combination), drawers, or camisoles in colors ... only in whites and ivories. Were those particular underpinnings also made in colors (black, even?) in the late 19th century?
Thank you in advance~

FIDM Museum

Hello MrsCMJ! Thank you for your question. Yes, black could have been used in chemises, drawers, or camisoles in the late-19th century for mourning; white garments could also be threaded through with black, grey, or mauve ribbon depending on the level of mourning. The more colorful or decorated examples of underpinnings - often made of silk - would have been found in the luxury market that did not require repetitive cleaning. The FIDM Museum has a British mid-1860s white cotton chemise and drawers set with contrasting red trim.

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