Imagine wearing the same style clothes for a whole decade.
Don't worry that didn't happen. But if you look at the clothes worn in 1890 and compare them to the clothes worn in 1899, you might think it did.
I have shuffled them about. Try to guess which of each pairing is 1890 vs. 1899. It's not an easy task, which is why the 'style' is often referred to as '1890's' and not properly dated.
Answers to pairings at the bottom of the blog.
The truth is the decade began and ended in similar form. Other than a slightly larger bustle in 1890, one would think the ladies had gone shopping in their storage boxes after growing weary of the radical mid-years of 1894-1896.
1894- The year the NEW WOMEN Campaign began. And ladies evidently wished to be forego their 'fragile' appearance and instead appear strong, bold and in charge.
1896- the style explodes to such extremes it has no where to go but out (of fashion). Imagine trying to put a coat over these oversized mutton sleeves. How intimating for the men when the women have broader shoulders than they do! And notice the dog the artist has draw for the woman in the left pic. It and the lady appear ready to kick some ass.
I do wonder what the men thought of the New Women years. It certainly didn't make them alter their ugly suits at all. The only thing stylish about the late Victorian man was his bowler hat and the excessively high collars. Otherwise, their daily wear was a shapeless suit jacket that makes them all appear fat with skinny legs. No wonder the real guy in the pics leaves his jacket unbuttoned. He wants the ladies to see he is NOT fat.
Hope you enjoyed learning more about the 1890's clothes than you ever wished. I need to start painting clothes on my characters from my upcoming humorous, Late Victorian series, and I wished to share a bit of my findings with you.
Answers to which of the first three pairings is 1890 vs 1899.
Pic 1 1890, 1899; Pic 2:1899, 1890; Pic 3 1899, 1890