Victorian Late British women’s clothing change

British women’s sports casual set in the 1980s. Data picture

The late Victoria is the most severe period in traditional and modern collisions in British history. There are many changes in the fields of social culture, and women’s clothing is also listed. Driven by the two industrial revolution, the color, texture and production methods of women’s clothing have changed a lot. In 1856, William Punded, a graduate student at the Royal Institute of Chemistry, accidentally discovered aniline purple in the experiment and used it for the dyeing of wool and silk clothing. Subsequently, chemists have successively synthesized a variety of colors such as peacock green and blue blue, so that the coloring of women’s clothing is no longer limited to natural dyes. The cost of dyeing is reduced and the color is richer. In 1891, British chemist Cruise and Beiwen made sticky artificial silk. This kind of artificial fiber is similar to natural fibers. It has good hygroscopicness, breathability and dyeing. It is quickly popular in clothing production. Compared with clothing made of pure wool and cotton fiber, chemical fiber clothing is more strong and stiff. In 1889, the well -known American sewing machine company launched the first motor sewing machine, which was put in large quantities in the clothing factory after being introduced into the UK. This has greatly accelerated the speed of clothing processing, making the production of large quantities of women’s clothing possible, reducing the cost of clothing.

Victoria’s late British women’s costumes are not only richer in color, stronger texture, reduced production costs, but also significantly changes in styles. Among them, tight corsets began to abandon, which is an epoch -making change in the history of British women’s clothing. At the beginning of the 16th century, the British lady began to wear whale tight corsets, tightening the lace on the back to the greatest extent, making the waist slimmer. Because the whale beard is rare and expensive and the production process is complicated, “tight -fitting corset” once became symbolic of identity and status. With the development of the industrial revolution, steel strips and rubber replaced whales, mechanized mass production has greatly reduced the production cost of tight corset. By the 19th century, tight corsets became an indispensable part of women’s fashion, and even won the reputation of “typical Victoria clothing”. However, while the tight -fitting corset meets the desire of people’s beauty, it brings great harm to women’s bodies. In 1874, the British illustrator and the essayist John Reaton used Luke Limner as the pseudonym, and in the book “Fashion Fashion Fashion”, it listed 97 diseases caused by the waist, and all of them were attached to Proof provided by the doctor. The move was responded to the apparel reformers. In 1881, the Viscount Hibeton led the formation of a “rational dress association” to try to guide women to advocate the beauty of nature and wear clothing that is good for health. At the end of the 19th century, with outdoor sports and seaside leisure vacations, it became popular in British society. Sports such as riding, basketball, football, crickets, etc. require women’s dress to be lighter and comfortable, and tight -fitting corsets were gradually abandoned.


The abandonment of skirts is another major change in Victoria’s late British women’s clothing. The skirt is a skirt support with tight -fitting corset, and the two have a slender waist. In the first half of the 19th century, due to the influence of the French romantic trend, the skirts continued to expand. At the end of 1850, the British invented the whale whiskers, bird feathers, stem bones, fine iron, or rattan to make wheel bones, and connected to bird cage -shaped light skirts with bands. This kind of skirt has greatly increased the diameter of the hem of the skirt, and the penetration length of the extreme hem can reach 9 meters. The surface of the skirt is often decorated with lace, tassel or ribbon. By the late 1960s, the expansion of the skirt was transferred behind him, and the chief of the peak dragged. At the end of the 19th century, the famous British designer William Morris disgusted too much attention to decorative and false Victorian style, emphasizing the combination of practicality and aesthetics, and launched a arts and crafts. In the design and production of clothing, focusing on the natural and smooth curve of the human body, and absorbing inspiration from nature, the image of flower stems, flower buds, grape vines, insect wings and other images are widely used. Under the influence of this new art movement, British women began to abandon skirts and advocate the functionality and comfort of clothing.

Without tight -body corsets and skirts, Victoria’s late British women’s costumes are no longer based on highlighting slender waists, and sports and leisure suits are popular. London’s men’s old -fashioned name “Creed” meets market needs and has a variety of sports and leisure clothing such as high -end club women who faces the upper -level society. This type of clothing is made from three pieces of men’s suits. Generally, shirts and vests are paired with a long skirt with a cardigan outside. After the popularity of sports and leisure sets, it was quickly followed by women in the middle and lower classes. Professional women such as house teachers and shop clerks will choose simple and generous casual sets. Because the popularity of casual sets does not conform to the role of women’s role in traditional society, it is opposed by conservative middle -class men. From 1885 to 1900, a British satirical comic magazine named “Clumsy” published more than 200 comics that satirized “new women”, reflecting the anxiety of these men’s fear of chaotic gender and class order by clothing.

Even so, the trend of the change of clothing in British women’s clothing is irreversible, and the popularity of lantern pants is vividly reflected. In fact, this change has been undercurrent as early as the mid -19th century. In 1851, Ms. Emmi Brumer from the United States released a striking new women’s clothing, named “Lanlon Pants” with her name. This is a bold attempt to introduce Arab -style loose pants into women’s clothing, and the pants are tightened at the ankle. Brumer wearing trendy lantern pants in his speech on women’s rights attracted a large number of audiences. The tradition of the lantern pants and the lady’s skirts were contrary to it, and only brief spread in Victoria in the early days.

Although there are only a few people wearing lantern pants in the mid -19th century, and the popular time is not long, the introduction of the bright pants indicates the direction of the further innovation of women’s clothing, that is, get rid of the bondage of exaggerated skirts and give women more freedom of action. In 1886, British mechanical engineer John Still designed the first modern bicycle, and then produced in mass production and put into the market. By the mid -1990s, it was widely loved by the public. Although “Clumsy” magazine published a portrait of a number of women wearing lantern pants to ride bicycles, ridiculed them to shook the market, not elegant and weak enough. At this time, whether it is vision and self -awareness, or work experience at this time, they have become more confident in half a century before, and they have higher requirements for physical flexibility and freedom. Therefore, this time women’s attempts wearing trousers did not end because men’s criticism.

Victoria’s late British women’s costumes are like a mirror of social changes, which keenly reflect social changes. On the one hand, British women’s clothing had a bright color during this period, used more stiff synthetic fabrics, and had a lower production cost. This was the result of the rapid development of British chemical industry, textile and clothing manufacturing in the two industrial revolution. On the other hand, Victoria’s late cumbersome and gorgeous aristocratic clothing was replaced by simple and hard -working middle class clothing, reflecting the beginning of the aristocratic class, and the middle class gradually became the backbone of British society. At the same time, with the implementation of British education reform in the second half of the 19th century and more and more women to go out to employment, women’s self -awareness began to awaken, and tried to get rid of men’s shaping and rules of them. Come out and wear clothing that is in line with fast -paced modern lifestyle, becoming a visual declaration of women’s liberation declaration.

(Author: Tan Saihua, an associate professor at the School of History and Culture of Hunan Normal University)

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