I've mentioned the Courtois portrait for several times already and I'm more and more intrigued about the gown Ms. Dagnan wears in it. I joined Pinterest and started to put together a pinboard of 1880s dresses that have similar elements as the dress in the portrait. I've also had The Fashions of a Gilded Age on loan from library for quite a while now and I think maybe this pattern could work with the dress in question:
Then again, I've stared and stared the portrait and still can't understand how the bodice closes. 1880s is a completely new era for me, so any advice, ideas and suggestions are gratefully received!
I'm trying to make a mock up of an 1880s corset, so if that works out, maybe this dress will too.