Me In My Underoos

Or skivvies. You know, unmentionables.

Over the weekend, I hauled my period 1861 underthings over to a friends house, (Hi Linda!) for help in fitting the bodice of my ballgown. While there, Linda kindly took some  pics of me.

I would never let you see me in today’s underthings, but I don’t mind when wearing my 1861 underthings. I mean, they wore more under their clothes than we wear in our total outfits today.

Here, I’m wearing my chemise, corset, bloomers, and petticoat.


And here I’ve added my hoop skirt and another petticoat.


BTW, I ordered all this online. Isn’t the internet wonderful??

Putting all this on takes at least 10 minutes, and that doesn’t include putting on the dress itself, which is still not finished (holy cow!).


I can see why wealthier women had ladies’ maids because it’s difficult to put all this on my by myself.


More to come when if I ever! I get the dress done.



Cattle, corn, wheat, beans, mud, snow, ice, and drought. Plenty of fresh air and quiet. Our life is sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes joyous, but never boring.

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26 Responses

  1. Doe in Mi says:

    Wow you sure are doing a beautiful job of sewing all that up. Can’t wait to see the dress. Those ladies must have kept warm in all this kind of cold we’re having – they sure have enough layering! lol

    • Suzanne says:

      thank you, but the only thing in this outfit I’m sewing is the dress. I ordered the hoop skirt, one of the petticoats, and the chemise ready made, and had the corset, bloomers and the other petticoat made by a seamstress I found on etsy. If I’d had the time I would have liked to have made all of it, except the corset which looks pretty difficult to construct.

  2. Euni Moore says:

    I am anxious to see the completed gown; the undergarments are beautiful. The clothing in the 1860s was beautiful with such detail from the skin out but I can’t imagine the weight of it all.

  3. Rosemary says:

    Suzanne, the undies are so pretty, if the dress doesn’t get done I think you could get by just wearing them! Times sure have changed – now we complain if our panti-hose is too tight! 🙂

  4. Sharon Thompson says:

    You are amazing, such a wonderful job, and it looks very nice, and ladylike.

  5. Glenda says:

    Pantyhose Rosemary? Haven’t worn those in YEARS! (I gave up dresses).
    Great post and photos Suz. Keep up the good work and can’t wait to see the end results!

  6. Alica says:

    Can’t wait to see the finished product! Happy sewing!

  7. JB says:

    The “undies” are beautiful. Can’t wait to see the finished dress!

  8. Peggy says:

    Love it!! I want you to know I still read you blog. I haven’t had much time to post.
    Thinking of you!!!

  9. Patty H. says:

    I hope you will get a nice picture (front and back)of the two of you. I can’t wait.

  10. Elizabeth says:

    That is fantastic thank you for sharing! How did they keep it from getting dirty? I can’t imagine wearing so many clothes (especially in the summer!). Can’t wait until your dress is done!

  11. It looks great. All those pieces. They certainly didn’t wear that in our 100 degree summers, did they?

  12. Alice says:

    Looks wonderful. It’ll be so nice when we can see the dress. Could you post a pic of the fabric? Do you have special plans for your hair?

  13. Phyllis says:

    So fun to get to share the excitement with you.

  14. Lana says:

    You look absolutely gorgeous in the undergarments!! Can hardly wait to see the “whole package!”

  15. Lana says:

    P.S. I can’t tell you how impressed I am with your ambition and dedication!!!

  16. Rochelle says:

    Your underthings actually look like my prom dress from the 80’s!!

  17. Mandy says:

    How scandelous taking pictures in you underclothes and posting them in the internet! LOL! =) You probably can not slum in thecorset huh? Thanks forsharing. I love your blog!

  18. Mandy says:

    * I ment slump not slum. =/ oops!

  19. Chester's Mom says:

    You look just beautiful in your under garments! the dress will be the icing on the cake! I’m having so much fun, thanks for sharing with us.

  20. Jeanne says:

    You look absolutely beautiful in your underoos, Suzanne!! Aren’t we all glad we don’t have to wear any of those things now? The hot summers must have been terrible in all those clothes! I’m interested to see your “banana curls” – haven’t heard that term before!

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