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Style

  The silhouette of women’s gowns changed a great deal over the course of the 19th century. Side-by-side, it's easy to notice the difference between an early Regency gown with an empire waist, and a late-Victorian dress with a bustle. But it is harder to pinpoint the differences in style during the transitional decades, the 1820s, 1830s, and 1870s, for instance. With that in mind, I present you with a decade-by-decade visual guide to silk gowns as they evolved during the 19th century. *All of the images...
Though Victorians can be credited with helping to popularize—and commercialize—Valentine’s Day, when it comes to holiday fashions, their contribution to history is somewhat lackluster. There were no heart-printed gowns or heart-shaped hats. Instead, as noted in an 1880 edition of the Staffordshire Sentinel, ladies were encouraged to don “something pretty and useful.” In 1880, the most popular variety of that “something” was a richly ornamented fan.Victorian fans were accessories of great beauty. Most often paired with an evening dress, they could be made to match...
  In our February/March 2018 "Booty Call" feature, editor Callie Watts picks loungewear that will make you a real lady of leisure. From frilly robes to ultra-soft pajamas, luxe loungewear will make you want to put yourself on house arrest. Sleeping Beauty Mask, $12, bustboobtique.comAdult Carnation Pink Scales mermaid tail blanket, $76.66, cozymermaids.com Love Letters Shelf Bra Gown, $88, eberjey.com Ultra Soft Plaid Pajama Set, $128, plush-apparel.com Velour Ballerina Slippers, €25.99, oysho.com   Top photo: Deluxe Chiffon Dressing Gown, $199, ravenbombshell.etsy.com, photo by Kimmi Lynn/Gem City Photography This article originally appeared in the February/March 2018 print...
To celebrate the 45th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, we gathered the founders and friends of #ShoutYourAbortion to model some fierce looks for our February/March 2018 print issue. Photographed by Tawni BannisterStyled by Katie James and Amelia Bonow // Hair by Siobhan BensonMakeup by Claudia Lake @ Contact NYC Using C. Lake OrganicsEssay by Amelia Bonow  Roe v. Wade—the landmark Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion—turns 45 this year, and abortion has been a part of women’s lives since the dawn of time. But in spite of the...
“As the basket was padded and lined with satin, and bedizened with fringe and ribbons, pussy did not object to being a prisoner therein, and to being placed on the lady’s bustle as a pack.” —Truth, 1887 During the mid-1880s, the silhouette of women’s gowns was characterized by the size and shape of the bustle or “dress improver.” Unlike the more moderate-sized dress improvers of the 1870s, the bustle of the 1880s was—at its most extreme—large, protruding, and shelf-like. For fashionable ladies with cats, it provided a...
    Who doesn’t love a wedding? Trick question! Everyone does. There’s cake, booze and tons of stuff to secretly judge (we all do, it's fine!). Sadly, though, there are also dull great-aunts, too-long speeches, and the simple truth that wearing heels for more than three hours is basically torture. And that, my friends, is why a Royal Wedding is the best kind of wedding. You can not so secretly judge away at every little detail, free from guilt and any form of shoe-based pain. THE DREAM. So in that...

“Light or fancy needlework often forms a portion of the evening’s recreation for the ladies of the household…”  — Beeton’s Book of Household Management, 1861. During the 19th century, women were rarely idle in their spare moments. Many preferred instead to occupy themselves with a bit of sewing.  This sewing generally fell into two broad categories: plain work and fancy work. Plain work was used to make or mend simple articles of clothing., while fancy work—which included knitting, crochet, and embroidery—was used in a more decorative...

    From our December/January 2018 issue, Stephanie J. shares her "good stuff." This month, she's chosen 9 cheerful buys to help brighten up your winter.   Add a little lunar shine to your room.  BRASS MOON GARLAND, $58, POKETO.COM Get gardening  indoors, even if it’s snowing outside. MINI HAND-PAINTED HANGING PLANTERS, $28 each, SEAANDASTERS.ETSY.COM Light your fire with matchboxes handmade by a female-owned and operated studio.  CERAMIC STRIPED MATCHBOXES, $32 each, CONNECTEDGOODS.COM   Kick back on a fair trade Moroccan pouf. TAN LEATHER POUF—MOROCCAN HANDMADE FOOTSTOOL, $120 CAD (APPROX. $95 USD), BABASOUK.CASet the scene with a traditional Turkish...
When it comes to purchasing clothing that actually fits, the struggle is real. Have you ever dreamed of having a dress custom-made for your body, but knew that the price was way out of reach? Yeah, me too. Luckily, Merin Guthrie is onto us and has created an online clothing company, Kit (kitmade.com), that sells affordable dresses, tops, and skirts custom-made to your measurements. After you fill out a short questionnaire about your body type, Kit will send you your order, and if it doesn’t...
Some men may think that it’s acceptable to follow the president’s example and grab women without consent. But even at the turn of the 19th century, women refused to tolerate such behavior: a fashionable lady could pull a long, sharp steel pin out of her hat and give her harasser a good jab.When the hatpin was introduced in the mid-1800s, it liberated women from cumbersome bonnet strings. Urban industrialization, public transit, and department stores presented women new avenues for freedom. And in the early 1900s,...