This cabinet card photograph was most likely taken in the 1880s.
“The large collars for both boys and girls continue in favor, and are made in every style, plain and shirred rounded or square.” (Demarest’s Mirror of Fashion, June 1882, as quoted in Dressed for the Photographer, by Joan Severa, 1995).
You know, all we have to do is look back at the history of fashion to understand why we should avoid fashion trends. You don’t even have to go back that far – just find a copy of the Sears catalogue from the year you were fifteen. You’ll cringe.
Even though their momma dressed them funny, these two little Nova Scotian guys look awfully cute. This is actually a pretty unusual cabinet card. It’s the only one I’ve seen of little boys in nighties showing a little leg. In fact, it’s the only one I’ve seen of anyone wearing pyjamas. Usually people got all gussied up for the photographer. This photograph has a contemporary feel to it, right down to their bare Victorian feet, so I’m guessing their momma was ahead of her time.
(The photograph was taken by Lewis Rice in Windsor, Nova Scotia, probably around 1900.)