Category Archives: 1880s

Bustle gown for Victorian Roses Ladies Riding Society

This lovely muted mauve velvet and cotton bustle era gown was commissioned by a member of Southern California’s prestigious Victorian Roses Ladies Riding Society. The gowns worn by this riding club must be authentic to the late Victorian period and must be a rose colored hue.

Another requirement of the club is materials used in the gown must be natural fibers. Many of the riders choose silk for their gowns, but this client was drawn to the large array of historical prints we carry. So for this gown, we chose to work in cotton.

Cotton breathes well and will be both comfortable to wear and easy to launder. To elevate the status of the gown, we coupled our cotton print with a contrasting cotton velveteen. The client wanted something simple, yet elegant and not overly done. So, I added the finest of lace trim in a few select places to give just “a little extra” to the gown.

There is a whopping 8 yards of fabric in the underskirt alone!

I cannot wait to see this client in her gown at the next Tournament of Roses parade!
Happy Trails!

For more information about this gown or any of our custom designed historical fashions, please visit our website at www.maggiemayfashions.com

Rural Lady’s Better dress

This 1880s era gown was designed for a museum display in Michigan. It was styled to represent a rural woman’s “better” or “best” dress. It is a modified version of our Harvest Bustle gown.


Made of 100% cotton, it is serviceable and easily laundered. Styled in the latest fashion, this dress uses little expensive trim yet is striking with its contrasting fabrics. The brown striped print is a reproduction 19th century print. The one piece skirt features a bustled back that is worn over a small bustle pad and petticoat.

For more information about this gown or any of our custom designed historical garments, please visit our website at www.maggiemayfashions.com

Old West dress

This 1880s era bustle gown is a custom made version of our Harvest Bustle gown. It is headed to a client in Wyoming who is putting together a Lizzy Borden impression. Lizzie was arrested and tried for murders of her parents in 1892. However, she was acquitted in 1893 and continued to live in Fall River, Massachusetts until her death, on June 1, 1927. The case was never solved.

For more information about this dress or any of our custom made garments, please visit our website at www.maggiemayfashions.com

Retirement Announcement!

Well now. I bet that heading got your attention! Never fear! We here at Maggie May Clothing are NOT retiring… but some of our designs are!

Beginning in January 2018, The Godey Dress and The Varina dress, along with a few other styles will be taking to the closet as we make room for fresh new designs from the Georgian era through the 1920s! Keep your eyes peeled throughout the Spring and Summer as we unveil our exciting new projects!

The Godey dress was wildly popular for many years! Several versions of this lovely blue gown are scattered across the United States!

The Varina Dress was originally created for a film in 2008! It was well suited for the early teen actress we designed it for.

In addition, the following garments will be retired beginning January 2018. These designs will no longer be available for custom order.

Retiring: Our mid 19th century baby gown

Retiring: Our c. 1858 cage crinoline

Retiring: Our silk bustle era gown

Retiring: Our Regency era evening dress

Custom Victorian Era corsets

These two Victorian Era corsets are part of a large commission headed to a museum in Pennsylvania. These lightweight corsets are ideal for daily wear while still maintaining their shape and allowing for flexibility and movement.

For more information about these custom made victorian era corsets or any of our custom made historical garments, please visit our website at www.maggiemayfashions.com.

Girl’s Bustle era dress

This sweet little bustle era dress is more costume than history but is absolutely adorable!
The little girl this dress was made for lovingly dubbed it her, “oreo” dress.

So sweet!
For more information about this gown or any of our custom made historical clothing, please visit our website at www.maggiemayfashions.com or email us at info@maggiemayfashions.com

Salvation Army Bonnet

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A rare piece of history! An original Salvation Army bonnet (images from Ebay). c. 1880s.

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The Salvation Army began in London in 1865 as a mission organization. According to the History Channel,

“The Christian Mission, in which women were given ranks equal with men, launched ‘campaigns’ into London’s most forsaken neighborhoods. Soup kitchens were the first in a long line of various projects designed to provide physical and spiritual assistance to the destitute. In the early years, many in Britain were critical of the Christian Mission and its tactics, and the members were often subjected to fines and imprisonment as breakers of the peace.”

The first Salvation Army mission opened in the United States in 1880. The Salvation Army is still in existence today and has operations in over 75 countries.

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ref: http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/salvation-army-founded