Civil War Era Fashion Plate - May 1863 Godey's Lady's Book
Description of Steel Fashion-Plate for May
Fig 1 - Green changeable silk dress, barred with a darker shade of green. The dress is somewhat of the Empress style, the corsage and skirt being in one. The skirt is trimmed with a broad Grecque formed of black velvet, with a white edge. The same design, reduced, is on the corsage. The sleeves are rather small, and slashed up to the elbow, being caught together at the edge with a fancy sleeve button. The white sleeve is very full, sufficiently loose to slip the hand through, and finished with a very full muslin ruching. The collar is of embroidered muslin. Buff gants de Swede with three buttons at the wrist. Shawl-shaped mantle of black silk, richly embroidered, and trimmed with a fall of deep lace. The hair is slightly crepe, and is arranged in loops at the back.
Fig 2 - Morning suit of violet pique, braided en tunique, with a fancy black braid. Graduated black and white buttons are up the front of the dress. The wrap is of the shawl shape, bound with black braid, and braided to suit the skirt, the design forming a large corner piece in the point. Fancy summer capuchon, made like two half handkerchiefs fitted to the neck at the back. One half is brought over the head and arranged in the Marie Stuart style; the other part falls over the shoulders. It is made of black net, bordered with Vesuve ribbon and edged with thread lace.
Fig 3 - Walking suit of gray mohair lustre, braided with black; the sack being also trimmed with narrow black velvet and drop buttons. White straw garden hat trimmed with fancy feathers. Hair rolled, and arranged very low on the neck.
Fig 4 - A golden tan Pongee dress, trimmed with one small flounce, headed by a ruching. Down each side of the skirt and on the front of the corsage are graduated gimp bows. The mantle is of the scarf shape, and of the same material as the dress. It is trimmed with one ruffle, worked in buttonhole stitch, and headed by a ruching. White straw bonnet, trimmed with green, and coronet trimming of pink roses with foliage.
Fig 5 - A very stylish morning costume for a watering-place. It is made of white alpaca, with one box-plaited flounce bound with black on the edge of the skirt. Above the flounce is a lace-like embroidery, and three rows of black velvet. A short sack cut to the figure, but not fitting closely, is worn over a white muslin waist. The hat is of Leghorn, with rather high crown and straight brim drooping slightly both back and front, trimmed with a black lace scarf and black and scarlet feather. The hair is rolled from the face, and arranged in a chignon at the back.