Period Fashions Reference Library
1890s lady

Photographs of the mid-1890s
Actresses in Evening Dress

Focusing on Evening Dress, Hairstyles, and Jewellery
Note: These photographs are from an antique scrapbook from the mid-1890s of photos cut from period magazines

The page is under construction, but here is a sneak peek..there may be a book coming too...

actress with pearls and waved hair

Caption: Mademoisele de Marsy (photo by Kurtz)
Image tracked down in: The Cosmopolitan, Volume 10 in an article entitled "Beauty on the French Stage"

Pearls, Pearls, Pearls...
   too much is never enough
portrait bust with lots of jewellery and lace bodice

  • Rhinestone or pearl comb or bandeau worn at the back of the head
  • Pearl chocker, 7 strand, with rhinestone spacer bars
  • short pearl necklace
  • long pearl necklace
  • brooch at CF neckline--round with 2 circles of rhinestones and larger central stone
  • pearls looped from jewelled bow at right shoulder, looping across bust to the right front neckline, held with a rhinestone and enamelled? brooch
  • rhinestone bow ornament on left shoulder
  • no earrings
  • waved hair, in a soft pouff to the back of the head with puffy curled bangs, no discernible bun
  • lace bodice and fur wrap

lady with pearls and waved hair

Caption: Miss Agnes Huntington
English-born American singer and actress (1855-1939), she performed in stage plays and operettas.

“Just take the Picture, this Chair is Killing me”
Oval Portrait, Air-brushed Waistline
fitted bodice of patterned silk with interesting ball fring of netted or crochet covered pom-poms

  • simple short pearl necklace
  • 2 rings on right hand on pinkie and ring fingers
  • 3 bracelets on right wrist, beads, links with heart pendant, gold ? bangle
  • 2 or 3 bracelets on left wrist, large beads and one or two bangles
  • filigree brooch holding the neckline
  • large corsage of roses at center front neckline
  • large ostrich and egret feather fan
  • Very retouched waistline, easy to see where it has been painted out on both sides of the bodice and waistline.
  • Curly and wavy wair, with curled forehead bangs
  • no earrings
air-brushed waist

Note the painted out waistline, you can faintly see the brushstrokes on the right, it is very well done so the inpainting is not very noticeable, one tell-tale hint is the sharp outline of her bodice.

anna held, evening opera cloak

Anna Held

Paris Evening Coat
maybe it’s a Worth design...

  • pouffy, waved, hair
  • silk damask or brocade evening coat with silk chiffon ruched trim
  • ring with a large stone

anna held, evening opera cloak

Evangeline Irving

Amazing Lace
Battenberg Lace

  • wavy hair with curled fringe
  • looped necklace of small pearls, three short loops and one long to waist
  • extravagant Battenberg lace collar
  • looks like there’s a small brooch on the left?

anna held, evening opera cloak

Frau Katharine Klafsky

Crescent brooch and medal

  • upswept hair with hign knot,hairpin, and curled fringe
  • small bead earrings
  • crescent brooch
  • small medal with ribbon bow
  • beaded bodice decoration at neckline

anna held, evening opera cloak

Grace Kimball

Evening Cape

  • wavy hair with low bun
  • evening cape of satin with fur double collar
  • fur trimmed bodice
  • small brooch with small stpnes or pearls

anna held, evening opera cloak

Isabel Irving

Pearl Choker

  • poufy hair with fringe
  • seven strand pearl choker with jeweled spacer bars
  • long strand of pearls looped twice tightly below choker and one long loop
  • small stone star brooch below bust

anna held, evening opera cloak

Julia Ives

Pearl Choker

  • waved hair, center (short) part, with high chignon and curled fringe
  • simple double strand of pearls
  • beaded decoration on shoulders of bodice

anna held, evening opera cloak


chandelier necklace and star tiara

  • waved hair
  • pearl chandelier necklace
  • tiara of “diamond” stars
  • long kid gloves
  • fan in left hand
anna held, evening opera cloak

anna held, evening opera cloak

Lillian Russel

feathers and brooches

  • very wavy hair
  • ostrich and egret aigrette in hair
  • star brooches on collar and breast
  • brooch on left breast, medal-like
  • fancy belt ornaments
  • rings
anna held, evening opera cloak

anna held, evening opera cloak

Margaret Reid

simple tiara

  • wavy hair with low bun
  • looped bead tiara
  • beaded neckline trim
anna held, evening opera cloak

anna held, evening opera cloak


classic hairstyle

  • wavy hair with high knot
  • simple pearl earrings
  • small brooch

anna held, evening opera cloak

Maxine Elliott

pearls and flowers

  • wavy hair with low loose chignon
  • flowers in hair
  • four strand pearl choker
  • necklace with jewelled band with star and drop pendants
  • small brooch on bust
  • flower corsage
anna held, evening opera cloak

anna held, evening opera cloak

Marcella Sembrich

bird wing tiara and ermine cloak

  • waved hair, Pompadour pouff, with high chignon and curled fringe
  • bird wing jewelled tiara
  • dangle jewel earrings
  • fancy beaded pearl necklace
  • ermine shoulder cape
  • spangled lace trim
  • large, rectangular, jewelled brooch
anna held, evening opera cloak

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last updated 20 jan 2015/csb