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Corsets and Crinolines - unique vintage clothing

Ermine Trimmed Cape

Ermine Trimmed Cape
C.1860-1865. A nice practical item of clothing that will go with any Civil War outfit. Made of black silk faille, the cape features contrasting fuschia piping along every seam, and matching fuschia lining. All the buttons are original and only one is missing, at the top. I would take the bottom button and sew it at the top and replace the bottom one with a plain black one.
The back of the cape features an unusual false hood. I remember reading ages ago about how during the mid 19th century, false hoods on capes and mantles were the fashion but I had never seen one until now. The front of the cape is decorated with Ermine fur. and must have been a cape for autumn or early spring. It is in totally wearable condition and would be strong enough to be worn. It would fit a wide range of sizes up to about a UK size 22 / US size 20.
The cape does have some minor damage to it and whejn you look closely, most of the damage and repairs were done to it during the 1860's. The owner must have worn it a lot as there are careful darns to the silk faille at the back, and there is wear to the silk covering the piping in areas at the front. The upper silk faille fabric has almost come away from the piping at the front at the seam, which sould be repairable with some careful stitching. There is a little fray hole on the silk faille on the top of the right shoulder so that the fuschia lining shows through. It is small and is near the edge of the ermine fur, so it's not glaring. The cape measures approx. 17 1/2" long.
(Formerly L. Hidic)