Sep 26, 2013
11:02 AM
Style & Design

The 'Revealing' Story of Corsets in Connecticut, a New HavenTale

(page 2 of 2)

Children will be invited to dress like a Victorian—trying on a reproduction corset (children and men wore them, too), decorating their own paper fans, and making their own neckties—and at 2 p.m. performance artist Kandie Carle will present “The Victorian Lady: Dressing from Corset to Gloves.”

Both activities are offered free of charge as part of Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day Live!, an annual event promoting visitation to the nation’s museums. For free tickets visit the website

Carle will demystify Victorian fashion, including the corset, the museum says: “Appearing in ladies’ undergarments of the 1890s, Carle will add layer upon layer of the clothing, explaining how it was worn, and when and where it was appropriate. Throughout the presentation she will share insights into the fashion, lifestyle, manners, and etiquette of Victorian men, women and children, interacting with the all-ages audience, adding interesting anecdotes and dispelling myths along the way.”

 Carle created “The Victorian Lady” as a one-woman show in 1996. Dressing in costumes from a range of periods—1860s/Civil War, 1890s/Gilded Age and early1900s/Edwardian—she has shared her passion for history with audiences at venues including Victoria Mansion, Portland, Maine; Mark Twain House and Museum, Hartford Connecticut; the Cosmopolitan Club, New York City; the Brooklyn Museum of Art, Brooklyn NY, and numerous public and private organizations. She has worked as an actress, dancer, singer and director in the U.S. and abroad since 1980, with performances ranging from Shakespeare to musical comedy. She teaches first-person historic interpretation and all manner of theater arts. She is also artistic director of the East Haddam Stage Company, and an accomplished vintage dancer.

Beyond corsets and Victorian fashion, “Beyond the New Township: Wooster Square” provides an in-depth and often personal view of the neighborhood's 18th-century beginnings, the evolution of industry and the arrival of immigrants, the effect of urban renewal, and the impact of historic preservation, according to the museum. The assemblage incorporates more than 200 objects from the Museum’s photo, manuscript, and fine and decorative arts collections, multimedia presentations, products manufactured in New Haven, and family treasures contributed by neighborhood residents and local historical societies.

“Beyond the New Township: Wooster Square” is made possible with lead support from Connecticut Humanities. Additional support has been provided by C. Cowles & Company, The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, NewAlliance Foundation, The Richard L. English Fund, The Woman’s Seamen’s Friend Society of Connecticut, Inc., and various individuals, businesses, and organizations.  

The New Haven Museum is open Tuesday through Friday, from 10 am to 5 pm, and Saturday, from 12 noon to 5 pm., and is open to the public every first Sunday of the month, free of charge. For more information visit, or


The 'Revealing' Story of Corsets in Connecticut, a New HavenTale

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