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VINTAGE CLOTHES & ACCESS > VINTAGE CLOTHES

BEST Victorian Little Boy's Pink & White Striped Dress & Knickers w/ Hand Made Ayrshire Whitework Lace c. 1880-90's
BEST Victorian Little Boy's Pink & White Striped Dress & Knickers w/ Hand Made Ayrshire Whitework Lace c. 1880-90's
BEST Victorian Little Boy's Pink & White Striped Dress & Knickers w/ Hand Made Ayrshire Whitework Lace c. 1880-90's
BEST Victorian Little Boy's Pink & White Striped Dress & Knickers w/ Hand Made Ayrshire Whitework Lace c. 1880-90's
BEST Victorian Little Boy's Pink & White Striped Dress & Knickers w/ Hand Made Ayrshire Whitework Lace c. 1880-90's
BEST Victorian Little Boy's Pink & White Striped Dress & Knickers w/ Hand Made Ayrshire Whitework Lace c. 1880-90's

Material:  Linen Cotton Blend & Batiste Ayrshire Lace

Size:  Dress, Length ~ 21 & 1/2 inches,
         Chest ~ 29 inches,
         Back, shoulder seam /shoulder seam ~ 10 & ½”
         Neck ~ apx 12 inches,
         Armhole ~ apx. 10 inches,
         Sleeve Length ~ 17 inches
         
Knickers, Waist ~ 27 inches,
         Hips ~ 30 inches,
         Length ~ 18 & 1/2 inches,
         Leg Opening ~ apx. 10 inches

Quantity:  1 Set = 2 pcs.

A very dapper, authentic antique Victorian boy's  two piece dress and knickers garment, c. 1880 - 1890's, complete with pink and white stripes and lovely frilly hand made lace collar.  Just the thought of a boy wearing this outfit made my nine year old grandson cringe!

Due to the Victorians being generally smaller than we are today it is somewhat difficult to judge the age of the child who wore this garment, but I estimate apx. 3 - 5 years old.

I believe the material is a cotton linen blend, with a large fancy collar made from very fine, almost transparent batiste cotton embroidered with lovely Ayershire whitework lace and lots of embroidered Broiderie Anglaise button hole stitches.  A narrow white ribbon joins the lace and body of dress.  This ribbon is also embroidered with an abundance of tiny white work stitches and star or flower type designs.

All of the embroidery on both the lace and ribbon appears to be done completely by hand.  Please see our last image below for close up of lace detail.  The work is amazingly fine and is truly as nice on the back as it is on the front.  The collar lace is apx. 3 & 1/2 inches wide.  Beginning about waist level in front, the lace circles the entire shoulders, with a large squared back.   Lace and ribbon was applied by hand, while the rest of the garment appears to be machine stitched.  As a side note; the first functional sewing machines were introduced in the early 1800’s, with mass production following apx. 1850.  The zig-zag machine was patented in the 1870’s.  In the 1880’s sewing machines for the home were sold.  The electric machine appeared in the later part of that decade, quickly gaining popularity and widespread use.

The dress buttons down one side of center panel via small mother of pearl buttons, which are mirrored on the opposite side, however these are just decorative, not functional.  Hook and eye at neck front.  Sash loops each side at waist.

The knickers are so cute.  They have button holes at the waist.   I believe braces, (suspenders)  which were being used in the 1880's, would attach to the buttonholes.  There is elastic type cord at the leg openings.  Inside front is a very small little panel that flips open to reveal a tiny placket, with the tiniest little opening that measures apx. 1 & 1/2 inches long.  I really do feel sorry for the little guy that had to use that teeny weensy opening without soiling his knickers!

This Victorian outfit remains in incredibly good antique estate condition.  We did not find a single rip, tear, split, etc. to either dress or knickers.  While examining the lace with a jewelers loupe to confirm that it was indeed handmade I encountered an apx. 1 inch period repair that is so well done that it had remained undiscovered through all of my previous examining, handling, washing and ironing.  Granted, now that I am of a certain age my eyes are not what they used to be, but I must surely have had my glasses on some of the times I handled this piece and I still never discovered the mend!   When the dress is on, this area of the collar would rest at about underarm level, right front, as you are facing child or mannequin.  Due to the fullness and ruffles this it is extremely difficult to see and I really think you'd have to know exactly where it is to find it.  Remainder of lace is in excellent, strong, distress free  condition.

The outfit was yellowed from storage, so I washed and pressed it and was amazed that the pink striped fabric still retains very good color.  I checked the underside of the collar to see if the color was more intense there than on the rest of the garment, which would have indicated fading, but the color is virtually the same.  I did find one pin head size speck remaining, as well as a very small yellowish narrow line mark that had been hidden in the folds of the right sleeve, other than that the dress is excellent.  The knickers are also very nice, however the little Master apparently liked to get on his knees in the dirt, because there is a small amount of light, diffused yellowing right at the leg opening, where the elastic is. This is really quite minor and light, mostly on one leg edge, with just a hint on the other, however I overlooked pre-treat this area, so I think a pre-treatment and another soak would resolve.  (both knee & sleeve)   The fabric is strong.  It looks and feels very good.  Even the garment seams all appear to be very nice, with no thread breakage and/or seams opening, etc.  All buttons and hooks are even all still present.

I can really only identify two things that might bother the perfectionist.  One is that the elastic cord at the knee no longer retains much stretch and could be replaced if desired.  Purists like me would prefer to leave it exactly as it is.  Second is that the ribbon sash is no longer present, but this also could be replaced with an appropriate coordinating period ribbon, apx 2 & ¼ inches wide.

Overall, we feel this child's dress and knickers set is in exceptionally nice antique condition and a truly fine example of hard to find Victorian children's fashion.  The large, desirable hand made white work Ayrshire lace collar is truly like icing on the cake!

BEST Victorian Little Boy's Pink & White Striped Dress & Knickers w/ Hand Made Ayrshire Whitework Lace c. 1880-90's

$ 289.00

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