The Gallery holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world. Search over 215,000 works, 150,000 of which are illustrated from the 16th Century to the present day.

Advanced Collection search

'The Fashions'. Ball dress and morning dress, January 1863

© National Portrait Gallery, London

 Like voting
is closed

Thanks for Liking

Please Like other favourites!
If they inspire you please support our work.

Buy a print Make a donation Close
  • Buy a print
  • Use this image
  • ShareShare this

'The Fashions'. Ball dress and morning dress, January 1863

by Amédée Bodin, published by Samuel Orchart Beeton, published in The Englishwoman's Domestic Magazine, first published in Le Moniteur de la Mode
hand-coloured etching and line engraving, published January 1863
8 1/4 in. x 5 3/8 in. (211 mm x 135 mm) paper size
acquired unknown source, 1930
Reference Collection
NPG D48000

Artistsback to top

This portraitback to top

Described in the magazine:
Ball Dress. - The hair is parted on one side, and is arranged in three frizzed curls over the forehead. It is also very much frizzed behind and at the side. A diadem of roses and leaves is worn at the top of the head, which terminates in white blonde lappets behind, edged with black. The under-skirt of the dress may either be made of white satin or glacé silk. It is covered with white tulle, trimmed with black lace ruching, and studded with red roses. On each seam the tulle lace and roses are carried as high as the waist, whilst between each of these straight trimmings the tulle is lightly puffed over the silk crossways. The bottom of the skirt is trimmed with a ruching of lace, put on in scallops, and the tulle is studded to the height of about 15 inches with roses. The top of the bodice is ornamented with a drapery of tulle, trimmed with 3 rows of lace ruching. The sleeves, trimmed to correspond, are looped up with roses towards the inner part of the arm.
Morning Dress. - Hair very much frizzed, surmounted by an amber bow, edged with black lace. Dress and Veste Française in plum-coloured silk rep, braided in black, with gilet and sleeves of amber watered silk, also braided in black. The Veste Française is of the Zouave jacket shape in front, and is arranged with a pleated basque or swallow-tail behind. This model is one of the Parisian novelties, and, from what we understand, is likely to meet with a great success. Muslin cravat, tied in a large bow. A coloured dress, and black silk gilet and under-sleeves, would look very prettily; or a black silk dress, with coloured gilet and sleeves, would have a very good effect.

Events of 1863back to top

Current affairs

The opening of the world's first underground railway, with the Metropolitan Railway running trains between Bishop's Street, Padington and Farringdon. Work had begun in 1860, using the 'cut-and-cover' method of construction. The Metropolitan line inspired the construction of other underground railways - the Parisian 'Metro' took its name from the line.
The Football Association is founded.

Art and science

Julia Margaret Cameron takes up photography, taking portraits of some of the most celebrated figures of the day, with her romantic style capturing the sense of nostalgia and longing that characterised the age.
Kingsley's Water Babies; A Fairy Tale for Children is published, the hugely popular tale of drowned chimney sweep Tom's moral education in the river world of the water babies. It inspired the 1978 film starring James Mason.


At an international conference, the Geneva Public Welfare Society calls on the sixteen nations present to form voluntary units to help the wartime wounded. The society, comprised of five Swiss citizens and led by Henri Dunant, who had been deeply affected by the casualties he had witnessed at the Battle of Solferino, became the National Red Cross Societies, adopting the emblem of a red cross on white background.

Tell us more back to top

Can you tell us more about this portrait? Spotted an error, information that is missing (a sitter’s life dates, occupation or family relationships, or a date of portrait for example) or do you know anything that we don't know? If you have information to share please complete the form below.

If you require information from us, please use our Archive enquiry service. You can buy a print of most illustrated portraits. Select the portrait of interest to you, then look out for a Buy a Print button. Prices start at £6 for unframed prints, £25 for framed prints. If you wish to license this image, please use our Rights and Images service.

Please note that we cannot provide valuations.

We digitise over 8,000 portraits a year and we cannot guarantee being able to digitise images that are not already scheduled.

What can you tell us?close

There are occasions when we are unsure of the identity of a sitter or artist, their life dates, occupation or have not recorded their family relationships. Sometimes we have not recorded the date of a portrait. Do you have specialist knowledge or a particular interest about any aspect of the portrait or sitter or artist that you can share with us? We would welcome any information that adds to and enhances our information and understanding about a particular portrait, sitter or artist.


How do you know this? Please could you let us know your source of information.

* Permission to publish (Privacy information)
Privacy Informationclose

The National Portrait Gallery will NOT use your information to contact you or store for any other purpose than to investigate or display your contribution. By ticking permission to publish you are indicating your agreement for your contribution to be shown on this collection item page. Please note your email address will not be displayed on the page nor will it be used for any marketing material or promotion of any kind.

Please ensure your comments are relevant and appropriate. Your contributions must be polite and with no intention of causing trouble. All contributions are moderated.

Your Emailclose

Contributions are moderated. We'll need your email address so that we can follow up on the information provided and contact you to let you know when your contribution has been published.


Pioneer Podcasts

Listen to a series of podcasts exploring the lives of pioneering women, past and present.

Explore the podcasts

Untitled, c.1973 (Alex Chilton) by William Eggleston © Eggleston Artistic Trust

Eggleston Playlist

William Eggleston was closely associated with the alternative music scene in Memphis. Revisit our 2016 exhibition and listen to a special playlist.

Listen to the playlist

Archive interviews

Links to audio and transcripts of interviews with artists, sitters and historic recordings.

Watch, listen and read