Figure 1.--This American boy was photograohed in Chicago, Illinois. The portrait is undated, but we would guess the late 1880s. He wears one of the largest lace collars we have noted. You can hardly see his jacket. The boy here looks to us to have pinned on wrist cuffs, but we are not sure if the collar is attached to the blouse or not. Note the wide-brimmed hat he is holding. Click on the image for a fuller discussion of his outfit.
We are trying to determine just what kind of item the lace collar was. The lace collar and wrist trim here looks to us to have been pinned on rather than an integral part of the blouse, although it is difficult to tell. Fauntleroy suits were worn with collared blouses or had lace collars pinned on the jacket. While we are not sure about this, we believe that generally speaking the lace collars were pinned on rather than a part of the blouse. Some blouses wid, however, have collars with lace added to the ruffle trim. We at first thought most of the original lace collars were fancy blouses worn with small jackets. Increasingly we believe that the elaborate lace collars and cuffs appear to have been attached to the jacket, but were not part of the blouse. We know that some lace collars were just pinned on. We suspect that some lace collars were sewn on to the blouse. Sometimes it is easy to tell other times it is impossible. One complication here is that many of the boys are not wearing ready-made clothes. Boys from wealthy families might have their suits and blouses made by a seamstress. Thus the conformity develooed with ready made clothes in the 20th century is not yet the case with Fauntlerou suits in the late 19th century. We have noted Fauntleroy blouses in catalogs, but these seem to havec ruffled collars or ruffled collars wiyh lce trim rather than large lace collars. The boy here looks to us to have pinned on wrist cuffs, but we are not sure if the collar is attached to the blouse or not (figure 1).
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