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Drama: DRAMA 255 - 18th and 19th C. Costume Design

Starting points for research in drama

Recommended Books

General Reference

Patterns & Construction

General Reference

Patterns & Construction

Other Resources

Commercial Pattern Archive 

Provides thousands of different commercial clothing patterns originally published between 1868-2000.

Trade Catalogues and the American Home 

Full color scans of American consumer catalogs from 1850-1950. Use it to find pictures and descriptions of tons of household objects such as washing machines, vacuums, lighting, clothing, home decor, toys, etc. A veritable treasure trove of information (both visual and written) on how Americans lived during this 100 year time span.

  • Try this search that brings together all of the clothing and accessories catalogues prior to 1900 in one place.


A digital library with over one million images. Images are keyword searchable or can be browsed by geographic area, classification (e.g., decorative object, painting, fashion, etc.), and date. Majority of images tend to come from museum collections.

  • Try this search to browse through all Fashion, Costume, and Jewelry pictures between 1700-1900. You can then use the geographic limits on the left side to narrow it down to a particular country.

Godey's Lady's Book 

Covers 1830-1875. An American magazine intended to entertain, educate, and inform women. It includes extensive fashion descriptions and image plates.