19th Century, Felicity, Sewing

Corsets, crinolines & kitty cats

How to tell if you have awesome friends:

If they stop by your house on the weekend for a cup of tea and you say “Oh, I was just about to climb into a chemise and corset, any chance you’d be willing to take some photos of me?” and they spend over an hour helping to lace you into a corset and directing poses  and snapping photos:

1880s corset & chemise thedreamstress.com

The resulting photos are  evidence of how truly fabulous  Emily of Ever So Scrumptious is!  I hope she had as much fun as I did helping me document me wearing  my 1860s chemise (finally!) and new stockings and drawers, and red elliptical crinoline (even more finally!), and paisley petticoat (also finally).

We got some lovely atmospheric, romantic period stuff:

1880s corset & chemise thedreamstress.com

And some adorable stuff with Felicity (because how could you possibly pass up the chance to pose with Felicity?):

1860s elliptical crinoline thedreamstress.com

And some fun stuff with me being silly (this is me immediately after saying “I don’t know what to do with my hands!  I feel they should be doing something!  Should I just throw them out?):

1860s elliptical crinoline thedreamstress.com

Or just showing off all views of the garment (note to self – I need to add one more band of wire to this hoopskirt, and re-arrange the wires so they form a  smoother bell:

1860s elliptical crinoline thedreamstress.com

Felicity objected to posing (she only likes to be gorgeous on her own terms, thank you very much), so I got her involved by playing button soccer with her on the bureau chest:

1860s paisley petticoat thedreamstress.com


We had to end that game when she decided to ‘win’ by trying to eat the ball.  I guess that’s better than trying to eat the other players, but still not ideal!

1860s paisley petticoat thedreamstress.com


I was so distraught and overwhelmed at the thought of sports cannibalism that I had to swoon:

1860s paisley petticoat thedreamstress.com


Most gracefully and elegantly of course 😉

1860s paisley petticoat thedreamstress.com

I soon recovered, and found a much more effective and satisfying (and safe!) way to tempt Felicity to be part of the photoshoot.

1860s paisley petticoat thedreamstress.com



1860s paisley petticoat (& Felicity the cat) thedreamstress.com


Many, many thanks Emily!

(and on the subject of awesome friends, Joie de Vivre has written the sweetest post about all of us,: D’awww!)


  1. I love seeing the layers put together. I have been curious as to how many layers are under and over the corset. And Felicity of course.

  2. Beautiful! I love your furry little accessory, but I suppose there’s no chance of training her to pose as a fur stole a la Greebo? Sigh…

  3. That first photo is quite magical. I can see how it came about to be, but it’s still something else!
    And the rest, as noted, shows the progression of the dressing beautifully. It’s the paisley petticoat, isn’t it?

    (I accidentally wrote “petticat” at first. I wonder what kind of cat that is? Is Miss Fiss a petticat?)

  4. Lynne says

    Such fun!

    Yes, I agree with Hana-Marmota – Miss Fiss is a petticat! 🙂

  5. MJ Ruisi says

    PURE Magic…..and your foundations are truly gorgeous and inspired.. thanks for sharing,Mark

  6. What great photos! Photoshoots are awesome – but good friends are the best!

  7. Lovely photos, and I love seeing you play with Fissy. We had a neighborhood cat visit the other night, and we played the string game for a good half an hour. SO fun.

  8. letthemeatcake says

    It ‘s lovely but what about the cat? Some cats actually enjoy getting outfitted because of all the attention they are getting when in full attire….like ” oh you are the cutest CUTEST thing ever…” …coming from every one of those weird humans who give them food and stuff. They probably don’t know what that has to do do with the piece of fabric put on top of them but some cats are like:…ah whatever the reason… http://thenypost.files.wordpress.com/2013/08/prince_henryy-300×300.jpg

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