APPLIED ART : COSTUME
design :open robe of blue brocaded silk. Open robe of blue brocaded silk, 1770s Although this dress dates from the 1770s, it has undergone several alterations in its lifetime, reflecting changes in fashion and high value placed on textiles before the industrial revolution. The bodice has been adapted at least once, probably for fancy dress, and the robings have been altered and misplaced at least once also. Conservation work in the 1970s replaced the robings to their original position, revealing that this dress was originally made in a style known as an “open robe”, made to be worn with a visible petticoat. From conservation treatment record- Judith Crockett, may/June 1978 Bodice has be adapted at least once, probably for fancy dress and robings have been altered and misplaces at least once also., hooks had been added to join bottom of robings and these were removed plus a blue thread obviously contemporary, which was used to tuck up the bodice near hooks. Roughly sewn dart, also in blue thread was removed form centre back. The waistline had be shortened slightly, this was rectified and it seemed that the pleas on the skirt had also been in places, the skirt has been removed from bodice as far back as centre back fold and was re-pleated according to older crease line on the fabric and the natural fall of the fabric. The robings were also replaced to their original position and it now appears that the robe is in fact an open one, to be worn with a petticoat. This work was carried out on a dummy with a hoop petticoat (mock-up) to determine the style as authentically as possible. For display a stomacher of blue satin was made up and also the front section of a petticoat was made up of terylene wadding and cream satin and quilted. Ruffled lace was also added to the bottom of the sleeves around the neck of the dress and across the front of the stomacher.
National Museums NI