I decided to re-examine the back of the gown today. If there were a detachable train, I thought, there would need to be a method to attach it’s sides to the dress so the train didn’t fly up like a superman cape. Lo and behold, I found the method. There are a series of small thread loops going down the side directly below the last button.
It’s absolutely maddening to have in one’s mind how the train was constructed, but not have it exist anymore. I can make a pretty good guess as to what it looked like:
- made of the olive silk and lined in the base fabric
- trimmed at the hem with the three rows of pleating
- attached to the dress at the top with rather large button holes. The holes would have been cut out of some rather stiff material, and it would have been buttoned onto the holes on the right side of the fabric
- had a series of metal hooks down the sides that attached to our thread loops
The train option would have made this gown for a wealthy woman who received guests ceremoniously. When I get around to it, I will post a drawing of what the dress probably looked like avec train.