29. 1897 Vere Goold Dress, McCord Museum

“Bodice
Vere Goold
About 1897-1898, 19th century
Fibre: silk (velvet, taffeta, satin, lace, moire, chiffon); metal; glass (diamente); Sewn (hand)
Gift of Mrs. Isabel Barclay Dobell
M970.25.1
© McCord Museum

Description
In 1897, in fashionable dress, the large gigot or balloon sleeve collapsed to be replaced by a great stylistic variety of smaller sleeves; one of these styles is seen in this McCord example. The bolero bodice is of warp-printed silk taffeta woven with velvet fan-like and ribbon motifs, the front edges being bordered with “vanishing” lace over velvet. It has mousquetaire sleeves in velvet, puffed at the shoulder and finished at the wrist with a cuff of matching lace, and a double gathered flounce of moiré and of chiffon trimmed with narrow velvet ribbon. The vestee, of chiffon mounted over satin, is pouched and gathered into the waist at the centre. In front, under the pleated moiré choke collar, there is a chiffon double flounce trimmed with horizontal rows of narrow black ribbon and Valenciennes lace. The same type of ornamentation continues vertically down the front of the bodice. The back of the choke collar is partly embellished with a gathered flounce of chiffon trimmed with narrow velveet ribbon under a standing gathered collar of the satin, edged with “vanishing” lace. The short taffeta basques are accentuated at the waist with a velvet ribbon trimmed with two diamanté buttons in front. The closure is at the front on the left side. The skirt is of the period. During 1897 and 1898, illustrations in Canadian publications often show the mousquetaire sleeve, similar to the brown velvet one. Vere Goold, whose label is inside the Dobell bodice, is listed in Lovell’s Montreal Directory as a merchant operating from 56 Drummond St. (just above what is now Boulevard René-Lévesque), from 1894 to 1902. (Excerpt from: BEAUDOIN-ROSS, Jacqueline. Form and Fashion : Nineteenth-Century Montreal Dress, McCord Museum of Canadian History, 1992, p. 46.)

History
Large leg-of-mutton and balloon sleeves fell out of favour in 1897, giving way to small sleeves of highly diverse styles, one of which is seen here. This bolero bodice is of warp-printed silk taffeta woven with velvet fan-like and ribbon motifs. The front edges are bordered with guipure lace over velvet. It has mousquetaire sleeves in velvet, puffed at the shoulder and finished at the wrist with a cuff of matching lace, and a double gathered flounce of silk moiré and chiffon trimmed with narrow velvet ribbon.

The vestee, of chiffon mounted over satin, is pouched and gathered at the centre waist. In front, under the pleated moiré choke collar, there is a chiffon double flounce trimmed with horizontal rows of narrow black ribbon and Valenciennes lace. The same type of ornamentation continues vertically down the front of the bodice. The back of the choke collar is partly embellished with a gathered flounce of chiffon trimmed with narrow velvet ribbon under a standing gathered collar of the satin, edged with guipure lace. The short taffeta basques are accentuated at the waist with a velvet ribbon trimmed with two diamanté buttons in front. The closure is at the front on the left side.

WHAT
This bodice features fan-like and ribbon motifs of black cut velvet woven on a ground of silk taffeta warp-printed with a floral design in tones of rose and green. It also includes dark brown silk velvet, pink silk satin, light green silk moiré, ivory silk chiffon, dark navy blue velvet ribbon, narrow black velvet ribbon, ecru guipureand cream Valenciennes lace.
WHERE
The dress label reads “Vere Goold, Montreal.” This merchant operated for nine years on 56 Drummond St. (north of what is now René-Lévesque Boul.).
WHEN
Vere Goold, whose label is in the Dobell bodice, is listed in Lovell’s Montreal Directory as a merchant operating from 56 Drummond St. from 1894 to 1902.
WHO
Mrs. Henry Dobell (née Emma King) wore this dress in Montreal. She was the grandmother of the husband of the donor, I.M.B. Dobell.”*

*The McCord Museum
Montreal
http://collections.musee-mccord.qc