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Covered Stays or Boned Bodices.

Covered Stays:

Now for starters we want to defend our right to call them Stays. In Ann Buck’s Book: ‘Dress in the Eighteenth Century’  she uses a quote from ‘The Diaries of a Duchess’ where the writer uses the word ‘Stays’ to describe the Boned part of a Stiff Bodied Gown – for more info please see our page on Stiff Bodied Gowns.

That having been dealt with, we’d now like to show 3 of the Covered Stays that we have studied at 2 museums. Please treat these images with respect – they are generously given and all credit and thanks goes to these museums for letting us use the images we took during the study sessions.

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SNO.1290 – Berrington Hall. Photo used by kind permission.

The main reason behind this page is that we have noticed a distinct difference between Covered Stays and other Stays. We’ll use the word ‘other’ to cover over a multitude of sins as that sub-name covers decorated, prettied and plain, fully boned and half boned Stays whereas the term Covered Stays is simply that it seems – and therein lies the difference.

Details that we propose are distinct to Covered Stays:

– Grown on Straps – particularly to the front Panel.
– Fabric wraps over to back to act as binding and is a folded edge that gets felled down to create a neatness on both sides.
– Unlined – in the sense of a floating seperate lining – although SNO.1294 does look like it should be lined.
– Broader boning and much more simplistic in lay-out.
– Chunker Tabs in general and tend to be roughly covered in a cheaper linen.

The main goal for this page is to test this idea and see if it runs true with all the covered Stay images that we can find. For this reason this page is likely to be a permanent work in progress.

Bath Red Stays – No Number: