Men wore matching coats, waistcoats and trousers.
White lace was popular for collars and cuffs.
VICTORIAN AND THE LA BELLE ÉPOQUE ERA
1837 – 1890
Victorian and The La Belle Époque fashions are full of elegance.
Inspirations for the Romantic styles are taken from the Medieval, Renaissance, Victorian, and Edwardian eras
The Victorian Era
The Victorian era began with Queen Victoria’s reign in 1837 and ended in 1901, upon her death. It marked a pivotal time in Britain’s history and around the world. In fashion, the Victorian era is an elaborate display of class, wealth, beauty, and purpose for women and men.
The layers of dress and suiting required for poor and rich alike were impractical, sometimes even uncomfortable, but always beautifully fashionable.
Victorian fashion began with large dresses, poke bonnets, and modest coverings for the ladies, all while men displayed color, pattern, and rigidity in their attire.
The 1820s were a transitional period away from the “Empire” silhouette and Neoclassical influences. Instead, Romanticism became the chief influence on fashion. Layers of color and an increasingly exaggerated silhouette, for both men and women, created a style of dramatic display by the end of the decade.
The Gibson Girl
Probably the most famous example of 1890s fashion is that of the Gibson Girl. The fictional illustrated woman created by Charles Gibson, embodied the appearance that most women strived for in the era.
Her hair was arranged in the famous chignon style, with a bun at the top of the head and the rest of the hair loosely puffed out around. Her attire was hallmarked by the latest fashions, and she often sported the popular shirt waist and skirt combination. Across the country, including Erie Pennsylvania, women aspired to mirror the Gibson girl in her appearance and fashion.