Shop Edwardian Blouses
The most distinguishable feature of an Edwardian-era blouse is the sleeves. Arguably, the most famous sleeve of the Edwardian era was the leg of mutton sleeve. The sleeve is characterized by a large, round top shoulder and tight fitting forearm and wrist. Also known as the French gigot sleeve, it was first introduced and popularized in the 1820s. However, when Queen Victoria took the throne in 1837 it all but ceased to exist as maidens favored subtler sleeve styles. Towards the end of her reign, the leg of mutton sleeve came back with a bang. Reaching its height in 1905, with almost cartoonish proportions, the sleeve was teased endlessly by the media.
Other sleeves popular at the time were beret sleeves, pagoda sleeves and kimono sleeves. The beret sleeve was made from a round piece of fabric and bound into a band at the bottom. Popular in evening garments, beret sleeves often had ties at the bottom to adjust the size.
Comparatively, the pagoda and kimono sleeves were much simpler styles. The pagoda sleeve featured a small armhole with wide elbows and wrists, reminiscent of the pagoda roofs in Eastern Asia. Meanwhile, the kimono sleeve is drafted with the bodice pattern piece for a loose fit. Modeled after the Japanese kimono, the kimono sleeve focuses on a softer shape with wider range of movement.
Blouse necklines remained high during the era, continuing the focus on modesty. Blouses were often decorated with lace collars and broches. Other features included capes, ruffles and back button closings. Small details, such as ribbon trim on the yoke, vertical pleating, and ruffled jabots, differentiated one blouse from the next.
Here at Recollections, we offer a range of Edwardian blouses featuring a variety of sleeve styles and details. We make our blouses from the highest quality fabrics: batiste, crisp cotton, lace, and satin. Better yet! All of our blouses are hand made in the USA and available in sizes XS to XXXXL. Our seamstress pay the highest attention to detail. We ensure that your garments are of the highest of quality and historically accurate. We can't wait to make your next (or first) Edwardian blouse!