1840s fashion is characterised by low and sloping shoulders, a low pointed waist, and bell-shaped skirts that grew increasingly voluminous throughout the decade. Hair was parted in the centre with ringlets at the side of the head, or styled with loops around the ears and pulled into a bun at the back of the head.Paisley or crochet shawls were fashionable accessories, as were linen caps with lace frills for indoor wear, and large bonnets for outdoors. Very fashionable men sported low, tightly cinched waists, with rounded chests and flared frock-coats that gave them a rather hour-glass figure inspired by Prince Albert. In the 1850s, women's skirts were domed and bell-shaped, supported by crinoline petticoats. Long bloomers and pantaloons trimmed with lace were popular.Later in the decade wider brimmed 'picture hats' were also worn, though still tilted forwards.Coats and jackets were semi-fitted and thigh-length.The waist was lower in the 1870s than the 1860s, with an elongated and tight bodice and a flat fronted skirt. Hair was dressed high at the back with complicated twists and rolls, falling to the shoulders, adorned with ribbons, bands and decorative combs.
Hair was worn with a centre parting tied into low chignons at the nape of the neck, with loops or ringlets covering the ears.At the beginning of the decade the emphasis was at the back of the skirt, featuring ruching, flouncing, and embellishments such as bows and thick, rich fabrics and trims.The middle of the decade saw a brief revival of the bustle, which was so exaggerated that the derriere protruded horizontally from the small of the back. Hair was worn in tight, close curls on the top of the head.Waistcoats were often collarless and single-breasted, and trousers were occasionally cut from a narrow check cloth.
High, starched collars were worn with cravats and neck-ties.
1860s women's dress featured tight bodices with high necks and buttoned fronts.