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  1. A religious habit of the Sisters of Mercy
    1920 - 1950

    Institute of the Sisters of Mercy of Australia and Papua New Guinea. ( ISMAPNG)

    This assembly of garments constitutes the basic elements of the religious habit of the Sisters of Mercy.  The Mercy habit was designed by the Foundress of the Sisters of Mercy, the Venerable Mother Catherine McAuley, in Dublin in 1831, and, with possibly only minor and inconspicuous alterations, was worn by all Sisters of Mercy until the middle of the twentieth century. The habit then began to be simplified and was finally discarded in favour of modern garb more suited ... more

  2. Ada Cummings' Lace Blouse
    1900 - 1908

    Private collectors

    This white lace and net blouse was made and worn by Ada Cummings, nee Owen. Ada was born in 1882, the second daughter of Stanley and Catherine Owen of Indigo, Victoria. She was born during the gold mining era and her father was the owner of the local store, hotel and post office on the diggings at Indigo. Ada's mother, Catherine, taught her to sew at a young age. This blouse is a fine example of lace, detailed design ... more

  3. Ada Nash - Wedding Dress

    Canowindra Historical Museum

    This dress, made by the bride, was very fashionable for the time, reflecting the influence of Coco Chanel who was reponsible for liberating women from corsetry. There are two parts to this dress.  The street length under dress or petticoat is made of a heavier cream pure silk with’ gold metal lace’ attached around the neckline. The outer dress is made of a lighter weight pure silk of the same colour, which gracefully falls in folds from the shoulders.  ... more

  4. Agnes Thompson's Wedding Dress

    Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences

    This wedding dress forms part of a collection of wedding attire, including shoes, dress and drawstring purses, which were used by Agnes Thompson on her wedding to Dr George Busby, government medical officer at the Convict Hospital at Bathurst, on 11 January 1833. Thompson and Busby are significant personalities in the colonial development of Bathurst, in country New South Wales, purchasing the first parcels of land in the town and establishing the town's first bank and School of Arts ... more

  5. Ah Bong's silk shirt
    1915 - 1925

    Albury Library Museum

    A pale blue grey silk Chinese shirt with detachable collar belonging to Mr. Ah Bong, a Chinese man employed by S.M. Abikhair as a hawker to travel around the Albury district selling haberdashery to farms and communities during the early 1920s. It is beautifully made of fine quality silk, and characteristic in style and manufacture of a long tradition of Chinese dress. The story of this garment is significant in the history of Albury. It represents two groups of ... more

  6. Amy Clarke's swimsuit
    1930 - 1935

    The Oaks Historical Society

    The Clarke Family of Murrumbateman were considered innovators in the development and production of superfine wool. Wollondilly residents, Jim and Judy Rudd, donated 4 items owned and or made by Amy Florence Mary Clarke. Amy's talents were varied as those of a pioneering family often were known to be. She excelled in dressmaking, crochet, embroidery, cooking, preserving, gardening and was a master at recycling. Amy's parents died when she was young and she was raised by her maternal ... more

  7. Ann Marsden's wedding dress

    Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences

    This is an important example of well provenanced early colonial Australian dress. Family history relates that the silk fabric of this dress was in 1793 made up into Elizabeth Marsden's wedding dress on her marriage to Samuel Marsden (1765 - 1838). Samuel went on to become an important figure in colonial New South Wales. The dress is believed to have been later remade (as it now appears) and worn by their daughter, Ann (1794 - 1885), on her marriage to Reverend ... more

  8. Anna King's Evening dress

    National Trust of Australia (NSW)

    This simply cut evening dress consists of short sleeves, a very high waist, sitting under the bust with a A-line skirt. Sleeves have a drawstring at the base, which creates a gathered, look when worn. The hem of the dress has a scalloped edge. The front of the skirt is slightly shorter than the back, which has a train. The whole dress is embroidered with silver 'plate' embroidery in flowered sprigs and a running floral border at the base. This ... more

  9. Annette Kellerman brand one piece swimming tights and silk overdress
    1910 - 1920

    Australian National Maritime Museum

    These black Annette Kellerman brand one piece swimming tights and silk overdress are significant because they are representative of the transition from restrictive to modern swimwear. The overdress still features a skirt to preserve modesty in public when out of the water, but the design allows for much greater freedom of movement than previous styles. Well into the 1890s, women were sewing weights into the hems of their smock-like bathing gowns to prevent the garment from floating up and revealing ... more

  10. Annette Kellerman costume
    1914 - 1920

    Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences

    This two-piece costume belonged to the famous Australian, Annette Kellerman, whose childhood love of swimming not only saw her overcome Rickets, but become a world champion swimmer and famous star of stage and screen. As a swimmer, Annette began setting new sprint and distance records when she was sixteen, and in 1905 she became the first woman to attempt the English Channel. Her talent for diving and dancing (particularly ballet) became the basis of an underwater mermaid act which she ... more

  11. Audrey Capuano's stars and stripes jumper
    1945 - 1946

    Australian National Maritime Museum

    This jumper reflects the experience of one Australian woman during World War II, who became an American War Bride and moved to the USA to start a new life and a family with her G.I. husband. The Stars and Stripes pattern reflects national identity and patriotism; a confirmation that she was prepared to leave home and family and become an American wife and mother. more

  12. Australian Army Medical Women's Service (AAMWS) jacket worn by Jean Kennedy

    Port Macquarie Historical Society

    This women’s army jacket was worn by Port Macquarie woman Jean Kennedy who enlisted in the Australian Army Medical Women’s Service in 1943. Jean worked in the local chemist shop before enlisting and was one of thirty women residing locally to enlist in the women’s services. A number of local women living outside the Hastings area also enlisted. Like many young women Jean wanted to contribute to the war effort and joined the Port Macquarie Voluntary Aid Detachment to gain ... more