The bodice is interlined with gold-colored silk with a slight herringbone pattern. The exterior seams are piped with olive satin piping and interfaced in olive satin. The interior seams are finished off with gold whipstiching. A piece of wool tape is attached to the seam excess on the inside (see middle of bodice inside photo) that holds the side back panels together, relieving tension on the waist. The bodice pieces are machine sewed with very tiny stitches, but some of the work, including the seam finishing and the bone casings, is obviously done by hand.
Curiously enough, it looks as though they fit the bodice the same way that I fit mine: by basting it together, pinning, and then making the final stitches. Where the two side back pieces are joined to the side fronts, it looks as though they originally had the bodice fit loser in the area between the waist and the bust as there is some very rough stitching that doesn’t match the other stitches on the seam excess that was not removed. It is not a refitting, the seam excess was cut to coordinate with the final stitches. Also, it is very roughly done. There is similar stitching on the seam excess on the front seams as well, though it’s not so obvious. I had to lift the bone casings to view it. There is no such stitching on the center back seams and the seams joining the center back panels to the side back panels, suggesting that there was a decision to not fit at that section. The back was meant to be very straight.
There are 6 bones, attached to the seam excess along the front darts and between the front and back pieces. They aren’t very long. The dart bones do not go all the way to the top of the dart. They start an inch and a half below the waist, and end an inch and a half below the top of the dart. The side bone goes a little longer. The start two inches above the bottom of the bodice, and end two inched below the arm hole.
I have a correction to make about the front, as I made an error in my previous post. The front is cut in one piece with two darts on each side. It is not two pieces on each side with 1 dart. I suppose the dress maker could get away with fewer pieces on the front since our wearer was not so buxom.
Another curious device employed to relieve tension across the waist and on the buttons was a waist tab sewn to the seam excess of the front dart extending across the bone casings. That would have kept it rigid and unmoving. It closes across the waist with four hooks and eyes, and removes pressure from the buttons. In other words, what really closes the bodice and takes the pressure of the closure is this little tab. The buttons just hold the bodice fronts in place. I remember that also from wearing the dress when I was a little girl.
I had photos of the armholes, but they didn’t come out very well. They are finished off with a tape made of brushed yellow/cream-colored cotton. The same cotton is used as the lining material for the arms, whose seams are finished off with whipstitching. The two pieced arms are gathered very slightly at the top, around The bottom of the arms, where the olive pleating is attached, is lined in olive silk. The lace is attached at the top of the lining, where the top row of pleating starts.