National Museum of Costume in Portugal are permanently telling the visitors about the history of Portuguese Costume from the Eighteenth Century to the Present Day, on the main floor of the Palace.
In the Baroque period, the female costume was generally composed of three main pieces, the bodice fitted to the bust, the skirt and the protrusion. The women dressed sumptuously, with the lace and loops on their clothing. Between 1740 and 1770, in the middle of the Rocaille period, a gentler dress appeared, with a bodice, skirt and the famous “Plis Watteau”, made up of folds of fabric that fell loose on the back, suggesting a false mantle. By the middle of the century, the “French” dress used in the grand ceremonies had ample lateral volumes, a girded bodice, and a protrusion open at the front, forming a triangular opening that showed the skirt.
The basic form of the masculine costume appeared in France at the end of century XVII, during the reign of Louis XIV, being composed by coat, vest and shorts. This group remained in the Rocaille period although the jackets were less wide and presented richly embroidered. The shorts were tight and ended below the knees. The embroideries formed floral and vegetal patterns and were made in the pieces of fabric before the cuts were made either of the jackets or of the vests.
Baroque style (1700 to 1789)
During the Baroque period, women’s dress mostly comprised three items: the fitted bodice, the skirt and the overskirt. Large necklines, makeup and perfumes were essential elements of seduction.
Rocaille styles (1740 to 1770)
Between 1740 and 1770, within plain Rocaille period, a new and buoyant dress is introduced, composed of bodice, skirt and the well-known plis Watteau.
Imperial style (1796 to 1820)
With the French Revolution, which took place in 1789, the revolutionary ideals of ” Liberty, Equality and Fraternity ” combined with a taste for Greco-Roman antiquity radically transformed women’s clothing. In women’s attire, women abandoned their corsets and little tights, as well as their heavy, rich fabrics, their dresses were straight, waist-high, and short balloon sleeves accompanied by high gloves. The skirts reached the ankles and the tails were worn only at court.
On the eve of the Revolution, there was a great enthusiasm for the male parts of the English costume, both for the quality of their dress and for their functional appearance. But the big news this time was the introduction of trousers in the wardrobe male, from the costume of the men of the people and sailors, pants begin to be used as a symbol of the revolution, as the shorts were synonymous with the aristocratic costume.
Romantic style (1825 to 1865)
In the nineteenth century, the era of industrialization, rapid technological advances arose in several areas of production, to which the fashion industry was no stranger. In the 50’s the female costume reached its maximum expression with the introduction of crinoline. This inner frame gave a large volume symmetrical to the skirts without adding weight. The corset reshaped the female bust. The preferred fabrics were silk and cotton muslin with pattern patterns, flowers, stripes and stripes. The colors were simple and discreet, predominantly blue and green.
The men’s fashion of 1850 kept the trends of the previous decades. The coats of black color or of sober tones were also used with trousers to the squares. For the night he wore a black coat with trousers and a vest of the same fabric, a shirt with a starched bib and a bow.
The publication of the poems Camões (1825) and D. Branca (1826) by Almeida Garrett marked the beginning of Romanticism in Portugal, which would endure for 40 years.
Corsets And The Waistline
Women recovered the use of corsets and the waistline returned to its natural place, since fashion demanded delicate waists.
In the 1850’s skirts reached its maximum expression with the introduction of the crinoline.
Females In Romanticism
The feminine ideal of Romanticism praised delicate, fragile and pale women, consumed by melancholia. The favourite fabrics were silk and cotton muslin with leaves, flowers, checkered and stripes patterns.
The Belle Époque style(1870 to 1914)
The ladies wore two-piece dresses, composed of body and skirt, which were made with heavy fabrics and the corset remained in vogue. The skirt was worn long, accumulating draperies, trimmings, trinkets, ribbons, bows, pompons and fringes. However, the characteristic silhouette of this period was given by a voluminous interior, called tournure, applied at the back of the skirt.
In 1890, women saw the emergence of the so-called “healthy” corsets that produced a wavy S-shaped bearing. In this way the bust of the woman was erected and so highlighted that it was denominated “chest of rolls”. The long, bell-shaped skirts usually had a small tail. The day dresses had a waist-high waistband and a lace bib or tulle. At night the dresses had wide necklines and the arms were protected with long gloves.
In the male costume, the frock coats and tailcoats continued to be used in most situations ceremony with top hat. For everyday life the three-piece sets – jacket, waistcoat and trousers – were worn with a bowler hat.
The second half of the 19th century was an era of great eclecticism both in arts and in fashion with a clear influence of other periods’ styles. Women wore two-piece dresses, comprising bodice and skirt made of heavy fabrics.
Women’s dress featuring this frame was made fashionable by the couturier Charles Worth.
Silhouette was provided by a voluminous internal frame called tournure (bustle) on the backside of the skirt.
Corset and Bodice
The corset underneath the bodice remained in fashion. The skirt was long, with an array of drapery, passementerie, trinkets, ribbons, bows, pompoms and fringes.
In 1890 women witnessed the emergence of the so-called health corsets, which shaped an “S” undulated silhouette.
Women’s bust was elevated and emphasized in such a way that it was called “turtledove breast”. The long skirts suggested bell jars and usually exhibited a small train.
National Museum of Costume in Portugal
The Museu Nacional do Traje e da Moda is located in Monteiro-Mor Palace, in Lisbon, Portugal. It has a collection of 33.000 items, which includes mainly masculine and feminine costumes from the 18th and 19th centuries.
The museum is located in a vast property acquired by the Portuguese State in 1975. This property – a former farmhouse of eighteenth-century recreation – has an extensive green area now open to the public and known as – Botanical Monteiro-Mor park, and its headquarters are urged in an 18th century building – thePalace Angeja-Palmela.
Its purpose is to establish a strategy for the research, conservation and public exhibition of costumes and textiles. Furthermore, it has a policy of safeguarding and promoting the Monteiro-Mor Botanic Park and supporting this heritage among the community.
The collections of the institution include collections of civilian clothing – women, men and children, national and international – and their accessories, fragments of fabrics and bragal pieces, materials and equipment that testify to the textile, costume and accessory production processes.
The first offerings of pieces date from 1974 in the registries of the National Museum of the Costume, all of them of individuals. The public collection that integrated its collection came from the National Museum of the Cars that, since 1904, collected an important collection of costumes of the Royal House.