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  1. Cynthia's "Gunner Leake" AWAS jacket 1942
    1942

    Rottnest Island Authority

    The Australian Women’s Army Service   winter uniform jacket is significant for its social history in a time when young women were encouraged to play a part in the defence of Australia, taking on jobs that freed men for frontline duties. For many young women World War II gave them the opportunity to leave home and spread their wings, at the same time helping their country’s war effort. When the Australian Women’s Army Service was established in 1941 the total number ... more

  2. Toddler's smocked dress "Triple Ripple"
    1992

    The Embroiderers' Guild of WA Inc

    This smocked dress, known as a baby dress bishop top, was based on a pattern by Margaret Herzfeld in the 1990s for the "Australian Smocking and Embroidery" magazine and for smocking lessons. The name 'bishop top' comes from the clerical surplice, a roomy gown with a gathered neckline. It is an easy garment for a child to wear, because it is loose fitting and allowing for growth. Through her teaching and publications, Margaret helped to keep the old skills alive, adapted ... more

  3. Gold & Cream Silk Cuirass Wedding Dress & Shoes Worn By Priscilla Batham Buchan, 1881
    1881

    National Institute of Dramatic Art

    This gold and cream silk curiass wedding dress with train and shoes was worn by Priscilla Batham Buchan when she married Thomas Ronald McLellan at Saint Bartholomew’s Church, Pyrmont, Sydney, on the 21st December, 1881. Pricilla Batham Buchan was born to English parents in Sydney. Her husband Thomas Ronald McLellan was born in Scotland. Pricilla and Thomas both came from wealthy families, which is reflected in the style and quality of the dress.  Thomas McLellan made a good life ... more

  4. Tartan skirt worn by Sarah Thomas
    1838 - 1878

    Tongarra Museum

    This skirt was made by Sarah Thomas en route to Australia from England in 1838.  Sarah wore this skirt from its date of manufacture until her death in 1878. Sarah Thomas, nee Waller was born in Kent England in 1808. In 1828 she married William Thomas a carpenter, also from Kent. William, Sarah and the first four of their ten children immigrated to Australia in 1838. They lived at Log Bridge Farm, near Albion Park in NSW were they ... more

  5. Voluntary Aid Detachment uniform worn by Nora Flynn
    1940 - 1945

    Roto House - NPWS

    This Voluntary Aid Detachment Uniform Dress is a rare surviving item of clothing belonging to Nora Flynn [1886-1978]. Nora was born at Port Macquarie and lived at 'Roto', the Flynn family home for most of her life. Nora was the eldest of six children born to John and Jessie (nee McDougall) Flynn and following her education became involved in many local community activities including the Port Macquarie Branch of the Australian Red Cross. Nora's involvement in the Australian Red ... more

  6. Boy's smock
    1891 - 1893

    Dungog Historical Society Inc

    The Edwards family have had a long association with the Dungog region. The garment is of historic significance as it is an every day cotton smock of a boy who was born in 1887 and who died in 1893 from diphtheria. It was made by sewing machine with the button holes sewn by hand, probably by his mother, Mary Edwards. The yoke is made from cream material and the collar is lined with cashmere, probably a scrap from another garment ... more

  7. Tom Carlton's riding silks
    1915 - 1925

    Dungog Historical Society Inc

    These silks are a fine, well-provenanced example of attire worn for competitive horse-riding in the 1920s. They are a vibrant fuschia and bone colour and feature horizontal banded stripes, covered buttons, a high mandarin collar and a draw-string waist. They were worn by Thomas (Tom) Carlton for the high jumping of horses in the Dungog region of New South Wales. Competitive horse high jumping was popular in Australia and much of the developed world in the 1920s and 1930s. In ... more

  8. Men's underpants made from tram destination roll fabric
    1940 - 1945

    The Australian Museum of Clothing and Textiles

    Historic significance: The garment was produced during a time of austerity and frugality. World War II had brought about rationing on a national level on all commodities, from soap to building materials. Ration books and coupon books were the only way to purchase goods and materials, including fabrics for dressmaking, so women looked to other clever ways of making up for the shortfalls in their household requirements. This woman and possibly the other wives of the men working at the ... more

  9. Porter Family wedding gown
    1855 - 1883

    Quirindi and District Historical Society

    The dress is made of Silk Taffeta in a plum blue colour that changes when the light hits the material or as you move around the room. The dress was the "best" dress of the owner and not necessarily a wedding dress. The dress was worn for a second time by the daughter of the original owner and would have sentimental value for her because her Mother had previously passed away. A parasol was made for the wedding of the ... more

  10. Cooper family wedding dress
    1906

    Manning Valley Historical Society

    The gown is of local historic interest as it was produced for the wedding of Alice May Chapman and Walter Stephen Cooper- two individuals from premier familes of the area. Both the Cooper and Chapman families have a long history in the Manning Valley dating back to the early to mid 1800's. The Cooper's owning beef properties such as 'Norwood' and the Chapman's in retail trade. The fact that a photograph exists showing the bride in the ... more

  11. 18th century waistcoat
    1770 - 1780

    Private collectors

    Captain James Cook (1728-1779) was a brilliant British explorer, navigator, and cartographer who, among many other achievements, was the first European to document the east coast of Australia. He was sadly killed in Hawaii during a dispute with the locals. This embroidered silk waistcoat was reputedly worn by Captain James Cook and is of great interest to historians. It poses intriguing questions that we hope will, in time, be answered. If it truly belonged to this explorer then it is ... more

  12. Cooke wedding dress
    1883

    Alstonville Plateau Historical Society Inc

    While wedding gowns are not rare in museums, this gown has such good provenance that it is significant. There is much documentation associated with this gown and its maker, Isabella Cooke. The APHS has a very comprehensive collection of Isabella's handiwork illustrating her fine needlework, sewing, quilting, crochet, tatting and embroidery. Four years after her marriage she travelled to the north coast, first of all settling in Bexhill, then Corndale and finally retiring with her husband to Alstonville. Her ... more