Belle Epoch - 1890s

In 1890, the bustle disapeared again, this time for good. The skirts are still slim in front, with a few remnants of the 1880 swags, and very full behind without poufs or lift.
Sleeves have a little bit of fulness at the shoulder, and bodices are either short at the hip, or long as a jacket.

During this decade, the focus switched slowly from the skirt to the bodice. As the skirts became ever plainer, the bodices exploded with layers and frills.

By 1892, the shoulder and skirts begin to expand. Frills and collars widen the shoulder. The swags are mostly gone, as are overskirts. Skirts are stiff and crisp, supported by layers of linings and full petticoats.


1890 - Unkown


1891 - Journal des Demoiselles.


1892 - La Mode Francaise


1892 - La Mode Practique


1893 - La Mode Practique

Sleeves are stuffed and boned, and various means are created to hold a good shape. Below the elbow, the sleeve remains fitted.  The 3/4 length sleeve virtually disapears.

Tailors begin to specialize in ladies clothing and a new style is created, the Tailor-Made. These suits were often plain, with jacket bodices.  They were perfectly to suited to the new professional woman, or for handling business transactions in town.

A more casual look was the introduction of blouse waists in bright colors. These were expecially favored in hot weather,


1893 - La Mode Practique

1894 - Journal Des Demoiselles

1894 - La Mode Francaise

1894 - La Mode Practique

1895 - La Mode Illustre
By 1896, the skirts had reached their widest limit, as did the sleeves.  Many skirts were wider at the hem than hoop skirts of old, up to 6 yards around.
Often, fullness was added to the bodice at the bust. Tight lacing corsets were needed to achieve the fashionably small waist.
by 1997, sleeves lost the fullness at the elbow, retaining a puff at theshoulder.  In 1898, the shape of the skirt changed.  the new disigns were closer fitted at the hips, flairing slightly at the knee to the hem.
By 1899, the sleeevs had slimmed considerably, as had the skirts.

1895 May - La Moda Elegant Illustre

1894 Aug - Journal Des Demoiselles

1896 - La Mode Illustre

1896 May - Standard Fashion

1896 Oct - Standard Fashion CO

1897 - De Nouveaute

1897 June - The Season.jpg

1898 April - La Mode Illustree