**UPDATE; All proceeds from this sale (minus PayPal fees) now donated to WIRES Wildlife Rescue**
I'm not really in the business of selling vintage clothes, but occasionally I need to clear space in the closet so here is where I'll be adding the odd piece from my own personal collection that I have built up over the years for research purpose, or that I have discovered on my treasure hunts in charity shops and flea markets and have no space for.
** I will be passing on all proceeds (minus PayPal fees and shipping cost) from sale of the original vintage items to various good causes. The proceeds from this item will be donated to the Australian charity WIRES Wildlife Rescue, a charity who are doing wonderful work helping with the devastating impact of the current bushfires on the wildlife population there**
This is a really rather wonderful and unique original antique late 19th or early 20th century black silk grosgrain bodice. It has no labels....like many clothes of the time this would probably have been made to order for the owner by a dressmaker rather than purchased from a store. It was clearly made by someone of no small skill....it really is beautifully made, with lots of exquisite well executed detail, and using very fine quality fabrics.
The shell of the coat is constructed from a wonderful firm heavy jet-black silk grosgrain, and is still as black as midnight with absolutely no fading inside or out.
There is an internal boned bodice, with all bones present and correct, none of them bent or broken, and securely flossed in place. There is one very minor hole in the underlayer, really hidden away under one of the front panels...a small patch in black cotton would easily and invisibly stabilise that if you wish.
There is a pleated black lace inset at centre front, all fastened and held in place with a complicated set of hooks and eyes, which all seem to be original and still in place, with just one or two of the thread loops at the neck and waist needing a little minor attention.
The full length fitted curved sleeves have decorations of soutache cord and jet bead decoration, which is echoed on the bodice itself, front and back.
It is in excellent condition, with absolutely no fading or shattering of the silk shell, and it looks like it has been stored away very carefully so it is in very robust wearable condition. The silk/cotton lining is also in excellent unmarked and strong condition. There is one of the original underarm guards still loosely sitched in place. I have decided to leave it as you may find it interesting....it bears the label 'White Rose', which I assume was the proprietary name of the maker of such items at the time. It is slightly marked (but definitely odorless!).
This is in superb clean condition, with no musty smell, this would make a great wearable collector's piece, or is ideal for any theatrical or re-enactment purposes as it is so sturdy. The only flaw that I noted (apart from those previously mentioned) is a small surface smudge under one of the sleeves, commensurate with it's great age, and only visible when held up in certain lights. There is also a snapped cellulose 'bone' in the stand-up collar. I have left this stitched in place so you can repair it in situ or replace, whichever suits you best. There are some missing jet beads, I would estimate a dozen or so in total, but this doesn't really detract from the beauty of the bodice as their are a lot of beads in total and the missing ones are fairly evenly spread out. You could either re arrange the existing ones, or replacements could be found quite easily on ebay or etsy.
Owing to the unique vintage nature of these samples, and the fact that all proceeds will be donated straight to the listed charity, I don't offer returns, so please be sure to check the measurements below before buying. These are the measurements of the standard UK size 8 mannequin on which the bodice is shown.
We do ship internationally, and I have included some figures for a few of the more popular destinations, but if your country is not listed please get in touch for an accurate shipping quote before completing checkout. Please be aware that there may be import tax payable at point of entry according to local tax laws.
Specialist clean only.