Object Record

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Object Name Bodice
Object ID # 1993.31.1
Creator Bechtel, Catherine Diehl, 1875-1974
Place of Origin Philadelphia
Date 1896
Material Cotton, Glass, Metal, Silk,
Dimensions L-20 inches
Description A ladies bodice made out of a black silk with a woven bud print. The bodice has a self-fabric stand up collar, and the back the collar features a net layer with a black and gold paillettes and beaded decoration. In the front, a pink and orange printed moiré silk taffeta panel has been attached to the collar and pleated at the waist, so that the fabric fans upwardly and creates a billowy tunic. The inner panel is flanked by self-fabric notcheded revers adorned with the same beaded and paillette decoration. There is a hook and eye at the back of the collar and an asymetrical hook and closure starting at the proper left side, underneath the proper left side of the revers. The gigot/leg o' mutton sleeves are set into the arm syce with lots of gathering and volume at the shoulder. The cuffs are also adorned with the same beaded/paillette trim. There is a self-fabric waistband attached with a hook and eye closure at the proper left side. At the back of the waistband there is an attached self-fabric bow. The entire bodice is heavily darted with metal boning inserted into the seams. The inside of the bodice is lined in a light blue/grey printed cotton. Silk thread covered wire stays have been inserted into the collar to give it support. The bodice is machine constructed with hand finishing details.
Provenance Made and worn by Catharine B. Diehl (1875-1974), for her December 10th,1896 wedding to Joseph B. Bechtel (1856-1928).
They were married at her uncle, Eli Fegley's home in Philadelphia.

Catharine lived and worked as a professional dressmaker in Philadelphia for a few years before her marriage.

The couple later became members of the Hereford Mennonite church, in Bally, Pennsylvania. The bodice was passed down their daughter, the donor.
Source Gift of Helen Bechtel Yoder
People Bechtel, Catherine B. Diehl, 1875-1974
Bechtel, Joseph B., 1856-1928
Collection Clothing-Women's