Black skirt and jacket set. Used in Kew, Victoria, around 1890. Label inside skirt reads 'Austin and Co the great costumiers Londenderry'. Likely to have been worn by Minnie Anderson of Kew.

Mary 'Minnie' Lloyd Anderson was one of five children of renowned architect Lloyd Tayler (1830-1900) and Sarah Toller. She married James Caldwell Anderson; they had a son and three daughters. The family lived at 'Mynda', 5 Molesworth Street, Kew, designed by Lloyd Tayler. She died in 1951, aged 91.

Austin & Co - now Austin's - is still in business today, and claims to be the world's oldest independent department store. It was established in the Diamond area of Londonderry, Ireland in 1830.

Physical Description

Front panelled skirt, panel formed by inverted pleat on either side which has 4 beaded paillettes on each side. Back fullness is formed by 10 unpressed pleats falling to a small train. The waistband is of cotton tape, and the whole is lined with black cotton twill, separate petticoat which has a fill of black polished cotton. With separate fitted bodice with standing collar, lined and boned. Front opening closes with metal hooks and cotton-covered metal eyes. Overlaid with Bedfordshire black Maltese lace, pointed front waist closure with 2 paillettes. Lace frill continues round the back with paillettes banded across shoulders, and below lace-covered collar. Modified leg-o-mutton sleeves ending in black Maltese lace frill and beaded paillette.

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