June 05, 2013

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings


She's the center of attention, she's got a fantastic figure, and she's incapable of walking out of the room.  What more could a girl ask for?

The bell-shaped skirts of the mid-Victorian era were a novel way for women to contrive an extreme silhouette, the hourglass of all hourglasses, so to speak.  But as many fashions go, this one developed to a dangerous point. 

Stories circulated about women trapped in house fires wearing bell skirts, and the notion of calling on a friend was hampered by the limit of how many skirts could fit in one room.  Then there was the relatively mundane dilemma of how one could sit down.  Practical? No.  But pretty?  Yes, I suppose... in a trapped bird kind of way.

Resource: 1000 Dessous by Gilles Neret

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