The Victorian Era is the period during which Queen Victoria reigned in England (June 1837 – January 1901).
Clothing was increasingly (= sempre più) factory-made and sold in large, fixed price department stores (= fatto in fabbrica e venduto in grandi negozi a prezzo fisso). Custom sewing and home sewing (= il cucito a casa e in fabbrica) progressively declined with the introduction of the lock-stitch sewing machine(= macchina da cucire) which simplified dressmaking (= fabbricazione di vestiti) in mid-century. New materials (= stoffe) were introduced from the British colonies. An example is rubber (= gomma), for gumboots (= stivali) and mackintoshes (= impermeabili). Cheap chemists dyes (= coloranti chimici) were introduced instead of expensive animal or vegetable dyes.
Early Victorian period
Women’s gowns (= vestiti) had large full conical skirts (= gone a cono), with a narrow, low waist (= vita stretta e bassa ) thanks to a corset (= corsetto). The large size of the garments (= ornamenti) both above and below the waist (= vita) made the waist look smaller than it was – it was the reaction to the Empire silhouette of ca. 1795–1825. The material (= la stoffa) used was rigid fabric (= stoffa rigida) like brocades (= broccato) . In 1830s the fashion dictated sloping shoulders (= spalle cadenti) and sleeves large over most of the arm (= maniche larghe sulla maggior parte del braccio) and narrowing to a small cuff (= polsino) at the wrist (= polso): “leg of mutton”(= a gamba di montone) or “gigot” sleeves (* see image) ,
Men’s ideal silhouette was with broad shoulders (= spalle larghe) , and a narrow, tightly waist (= vita molto stretta).
The shirts were made of linen (= lino) or cotton with inserted insets (= riquadri) over the chest (= torace) during the day and frills (= balze) at night. The standing collars (= collari rigidi) were worn with wide – usually dark – cravats tied in a soft bow (= legate con un soffice nodo).
Frock coats or redingotes (* see image) replaced tail coats (= giacche a coda) for informal every day life. Usually they were calf length (= fino al polpaccio), and double-breasted (= doppio petto). They wore single – or double-breasted waistcoats (= panciotti, a petto unico o doppio) with rolled shawl (= a sciallle) or (later) notched (= frastagliti) collars (= colletti) , and extremely tight (= stretti) at the waist. Waistcoast were sometimes worn two at time (= due alla
volta) , in contrasting colours. The trousers were full -length (= lunghi) and had the modern fly-front closure (= chiusura davanti). Breeches (= leggings, calzone attillati) were still worn on formal occasions at the British court, for horseback riding (= andare a cavallo) and in the countryside with tall fitted boots (= stivali alti e attillati).
redingote or frock coat