By: Kate Havelin
Publication Date: October 2011
Publisher: Twenty First Century Books
What would you have worn if you lived during the Civil War era? It depends on who you were:
*Upper-class women wore tight corsets, bustles, and wide hoop skirts to fancy balls. The layers weighed almost 30 pounds (14 kilograms)!
*For everyday, whether at home or nursing soldiers, women put on multiple layers of simple fabrics. Some daredevils sported women's trousers--called Bloomers--to make a statement on women's rights.
*Civil War soldiers wore flannel and wool uniforms--blue in the North and gray in the South.
*Men of fashion donned suits with velvet collars and silk lapels during the day and coats with fancy tails for parties.
*Underneath their everyday clothing--a shirt, tie, vest, coat, and trousers--men wore "drawers," baggy long undergarments that buttoned in front and tied in back.
*Slaves wore whatever their owners gave them--usually only two sets of rough linen clothing, one for winter and one for summer.
*Girls had loose garments called pantalets and pinafores, while sailor suits were popular for boys.
Read more about wartime fashions of the 1860s--from ankle boots to parasols and tiaras--in this fascinating book!
I love history, especially American history and I love fashion! I am obsessed with fashions from The Civil War, so when I saw Hoopskirts, Union Blues, and Confederate Grays: Civil War Fashions from 1861 to 1865, I knew I had to read it!
I really enjoyed reading about specific types of fashions from this time period. The book had everything from the types of dresses women wore, to what different classes of soldiers wore. It even incorporated the different clothes that slaves had. I also loved that mostly everything mentioned came with a picture. I even learned some interesting things about Abe Lincoln!
As a social studies teacher, I would highly recommend this for any classroom or school library. Hoopskirts, Union Blues, and Confederate Grays is perfect the pre-teen obsessed with fashion, or the pre-teen who just wants to learn more about life during this time!