A demonstration on the porch of the Dressmaker Shop at our recent
American Civil War Muster,
Starting with the under pining's, Ellen and I are dressing our dress form,
Count the layer's with me................
1. Panteletts, Bloomers, or Pantaloon's, 2. Chemise, 3. Corset,
4. Modesty petticoat, 5. Corset cover,
If you are dressing in a "Day Dress", you may have a, 6. "Chemisett" also,
7. Cage Crinoline, 8. Crinoline Petticoat, we put on just one crinoline petticoat, however
sometimes we put on 2 or 3, which would be the 9th or 10th layer !
Final layer the Ballgown, number 10 or 11,
How many layers of under pining's and final layer did you count?
Usually around 9 layers, and can be up to 20 pounds or more of weight,
Now you know where the Term "Dressing to the Nine's" comes from !
Also why these poor women fainted with a tight corset and so much weight on
I haven't even touched on all of the accouterments that go along with dressing for the
occasion, such as, gloves, shawl, reticule, parasol, basket, bonnet, hat or day cap,
I will save all the accessories for another post !
We have come a "long way baby" !