About the Vintage Dress Series
Published by Vintage Victorian
The Vintage Dress Series library, fashion history resources
THE VOLUMES, cover all aspects of an outfit from undergarments, gowns and outerwear to hairstyles, hats and jewelry,
and are produced with the goal of providing a comprehensive aid to assist in the creation of accurately
reproduced outfits. All of the illustrations are from original period publications, most from my private
collection, with occasional additions from the libraries of others.
LADIES’ MAGAZINES flourished in the 19th and early 20th Centuries. During this
time illustrations of ladies’ fashions were seen in abundance and the home dressmaking pattern was becoming more
and more common. These magazines, books, and patterns are an
invaluable resource, for both their editorial content
advertisements. Vintage Dress Series books include fashion forecasts, dressmaking hints, pattern descriptions and yardages, and “how-to” descriptions to
complete the picture of how one might reproduce a period look.
VINTAGE DRESS SERIES BOOKS are filled with numerous images of vintage styles gathered from countless
period magazines and books.
The images show the wide range of styles worn in any given period and
should provide examples of an outfit suitable to anyone’s particular needs and tastes. Where available, the
original text describing original color and trim selections has been included
with each illustration. Costume
accessories, undergarments, jewelry, hairstyles, and fashion forecasts are also covered to create a complete picture of each era.
My hope is that these volumes will prove to be a valuable resource on the bookshelves of vintage dancers, reenactors, Victorian
enthusiasts, actors, film costumers, historians and designers.
A NOTE ABOUT VINTAGE DANCERS:
The Vintage Dress Series began as a resource for vintage dancers, covering styles worn in the 19th and early 20th century
ballroom, to help dancers create their own accurately reproduced outfits. Proper dress, and almost more importantly undergarments, influence movement. Wearing period ensembles adds another dimension to the recreation of period dance.
Some of the most popular eras covered in our books and online library:
The Regency, Napoleonic, or Federal-era (1785-1820) known for set dances with
fancy footwork, the scandalous waltz, romance novels, and high-waisted neo-classical fashions
The Biedermeier-era (1820-30s) with the romantic waltz, fashions with
puffed sleeves, full skirts, and wild hairstyles
The Crinoline or Civil War-era (1850s and 1860s) with the proliferation of dance
manuals detailing polka & waltz variations, quadrilles & set-dances, danced by ladies in voluminous hoop-skirted gowns
The Belle Epoque (1880-90s) with hoppy, skippy steps with whimsical names danced
by ladies in 1880s bustles or 1890s puffed sleeved fashions
The Ragtime-era (1910s) with the exotic tango and steamy blues and ballrooms full of ladies
in elaborately draped gowns in exotic colors
The Jazz Age, Prohibition, or Flapper era (1920s), the age of
the Charleston, short skirts & bobbed hair.
The primary focus of the
Vintage Dress Series volumes draws its inspiration from these eras, with a particular emphasis on
evening wear as formal balls are such an important component of a vintage dancers life. Visit my calendar page for a listing of period events, balls and workshops or
The Commonwealth Vintage Dancers homepage for more information
on period events. An upcoming ball or period pic-nic is the the perfect excuse for a new gown!