Both years we recieved a lot of compliments for our costumes. I had made, with a lot of help, the year before. It had been an awful lot of work and caused a major costume make burn out, I haven't done any serious costuming ever since. When we watched the Ruby in the Smoke I was marveld by all the wonderfull costumes. I had nine meters of red velvet in my fabric closet, which initially was for a 1490's transition gown. The project was never finished, for it was to complex and to much work. So I thought that an 1885 Victorian gown would be a great use of that beautiful and expensive fabric.
Somewhere around March I bought a tophat in a thrift shop. It turned out to small for the man I bought it for. It was no terrible set back as I always had wished to own one of my own. I decided almost immidiatly that I wanted it to use it for my new victorian costume. The costume I was going to make had to be riding habit style in order to be able to use my hat. I looked at the availabel pictures of victorian riding habits especially those around 1885.
Elisabeth "Sissi"of Bavaria, Empress of Austria, in a riding habit, 1884
Ofcourse they where made of much more practical fabric than my red velvet, they where made in wool mainly in dark blue's, grey's, brown's or black's. As I was set on using my tophat and my red velvet fabric, I deciced to make the costume riding habit style instead of making a true riding habit costume. The costume will have less frills than the costume's of that age generally have and a more sober and strict look.