Dating to circa 1810, Handmade cotton muslin (or similar), profusely decorated with very fine handsewn whitework and drawnwork. Empire line bodice with a pretty, deep lace panel across the front and a corresponding panel down the centre of the garment. The Iace is believed to be handmade and hand decorated - as we are not experts in the identification of lace we must leave our findings open to question for the sake of accuracy. Finely worked whitework and drawnwork adorn the sides of these lace panels.The same handwork is also to be found on the two flanking side panels. The wide lower ends of the ties are finished in white work.
The sleeves have a lace panel to the front and back and gathering to the upper area - giving the sleeves a ‘puffed’ like appearance. Above the gathering there is a strip of white work extending to the edge of the cuffs to join further decoration in white work and drawnwork. There is also a handmade Dorset button placed between the inner edge of each sleeve and the edging to the front of the bodice
The back of the bodice is also decorated in beautiful whitework and drawnwork. At the back opening there are 2 handmade Dorset buttons – one having a buttonhole and the other appears to be just for decorative purposes. There are also narrow ties to the top edge and the lower edge of the bodice itself. The lower edge of the skirt has a deep border of white work and drawnwork which is a continuation from the front of the skirt.
Condition: Extremely good clean crisp condition for its age. However, there is a large tear repair and approx. 3 very small areas of damage close by to be found towards one side at the back of the skirt. The repair has been lightly handsewn.