Put on a civil war dress and instantly step back into history and become a beautiful Southern Belle!
Civil war dresses worn as costumes today are representative of the evening gowns worn by the upper society in the 1860’s to social outings. Most typically the dresses worn to such gatherings were comprised of eight hidden layers:
3. Chemise (a cotton garment designed to help keep the outer dress from getting soiled from body oils)
6. The under petticoat
7. Hoop Skirt
8. The over petticoat
These layers would then be covered with a blouse, bodice, and skirt. Lace-up boots were a popular choice of footwear with an evening gown and ladies would often accessorize with a flirtatious lace fan, a parasol, an 1860’s era handbag, some tasteful period jewelry, and then top it off with a Victorian hat and gloves.
Affluent women in the 1860’s wore several different dresses throughout the day according to the time of day: In the morning a rather simple dress was worn at home; a slightly nicer dress was worn in the afternoon period when a lady might venture out to lunch; and of course the evening gown would be donned for special occasions such as a ball.
Southern Belle Elite Costume. “I do declare, you look stunning!”
This dress is a lovely choice for any Southern Belle, although the manufacturer has modified the design you see in the picture on the left. The new version is shown in the image to the right with imitation crushed velvet, lace, and satin in shades of purple and lavender.
The dress is available in adult sizes: Small, Medium, Large, and Extra Large. Comments from customers who purchased this costume have said the length of this dress works well for taller women, so if you’re 5’6” or below you may need to make your own adjustment to the length for a proper fit.
This costume includes the hoop petticoat, a pair of white lace gloves, and a matching southern style wide brim hat.
Southern Gentleman/Rhett Butler Costume. If you’re looking for a couples costume, consider being accompanied by a dashing Southern Gentleman-Rhett Butler style! This gentleman’s costume includes a long dark gray coat, a gray vest with attached white shirt sleeves and gold chain, a white dickie with an attached burgundy tie, and a brimmed hat. It comes in adult sizes Medium, Large, and Extra Large.
Reviews of this costume were nearly all 5 Star Ratings (with 5 being the highest score available) however, several customers were not completely satisfied with the hat because they had some difficulty shaping the hat. Not to worry though, here is a link to a video demonstration on how to reshape a hat using steam.
Scarlet Picnic Dress. Miss Scarlet O’Hara is setting the bar high for the other Southern Belles! This elegant floor length green floral print gown from the civil war era comes with a hoop underskirt, a jade satin belt, attached jade ribbons and trim on layered ruffles. This costume is hand washable polyester.
Scarlet Velvet Curtain Dress. Scarlet is not going to let her circumstances keep her from the beautiful Southern style of dress she’s accustomed to! Even though the times of the civil war were dismal she creates a stylish dress from her velvet curtains.
With this costume you’ll get the the velvet hat with feather, the velvet and satin gown with layered skirt, a green and gold corded belt, and a matching velvet handbag.
Rhett Butler Costume. Another couples costume idea is for Scarlet to be accompanied by charming southerner Rhett in his distinguished ivory 1860’s style suit. This officially licensed Gone With The Wind costume includes the knee length jacket and matching pants, a collared shirt, cravat tie, and is made of hand washable polyester. Available in mens large and extra large sizes.
Red Deluxe Southern Belle Costume. You will definitely be the best-dressed Southern Belle in this vibrant red satin gown which includes an attached black velvet belt and bows, along with a hoop underskirt with matching red satin ruffle on the bottom. Sizes available for this deluxe costume are Womens Small (6-8), Medium (8-10), and Large (12-14).
The large oversized hair ribbon is not included in the costume and is not available for purchase. You may want to accessorize with the red and black lace parasol and red or black lace gloves.
Red Southern Belle Costume. This civil war gown is a much less expensive polyester version of the above deluxe satin gown. Along with the lovely red southern belle dress includes the fashionable red hat trimmed with black lace, and a black belt.
This dress is only available in one Adult Standard Size and the Hoop Skirt must be purchased separately.
White with Red Southern Belle Costume.
Another charming choice for a civil war gown is this white dress with red and black lace trim and attached ribbon roses. This costume is available in small, medium, and large and includes the hoop skirt.
Scarlet’s White Southern Belle Dress. Beautiful lace and tulle and lace tiered white gown is designed based on Scarlet O’Hara’s character in Gone With The Wind.
Lace Parasols. Charming lace parasols make an excellent accessory for any southern belle outfit.
Deluxe Southern Belle Costume. You’ll be the belle of the ball in this delightful white and black gown with dotted bodice, tiered, skirt, attached velvet belt, and trimmed in black lace. The complete costume includes the dress, hoop skirt, and wide brimmed matching hat. Sizes available are Womens Small, Womens Medium, and Womens Large.
White with Green Southern Belle Costume. This civil war era gown is designed with a 3-tiered skirt with green satin trim, a ruffled neckline with attached satin bows, and of course comes with the lovely matching wide brimmed southern style hat. The dress is available in sizes S/M (2-8) and M/L (10-14).
The civil war years were a major turning point in American history. Civil war dresses are a beautiful reminder of the happy times during the 1860’s era, an era which carries with it even more memories of a dreadful time of war.
Dressing up in a civil war dress is always lots of fun at costume parties, reenactments, or at school or community events. These Victorian style gowns are almost magical in the way that they capture our imaginations and take us back in time.
If you haven’t already done so, find a local Civil War Reenactment to attend. These events bring history to life and provide a fun educational experience for all ages. It’s a wonderful time to remember key historical events such as Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, which Lincoln read his original draft to the Secretaries in July of 1862. The final revised draft was completed on January 1, 1863 and was Lincoln’s crowning achievement.
How To Put On A Hoop Skirt, Petticoat, Etc.
Wearing a Civil War Era costume is a special experience not only for the one wearing it, but for those around that individual. These Civil War Dresses are truly spectacular and somehow are able to capture a magical part of a Civil War Ball during this dreary part of American history during the devastating war and inner turmoil taking place during this time period.