Bustle Day Dress Online Class

$ 77.00

Victorian Bustle Day Dress Class

Work on your own schedule to create a beautiful dress from the 1870s or 1880s!

Available as an On-Demand Class with access to our private group!

You can also join our private group as you sew on your own without signing up for class.

LOVE the Bustle Era but don't know where to begin to make a dress? Confused on how you build a bustle costume? Need a push to get that new 1880s project finished? My friends, then welcome to this class designed specifically for you! It is only for those truly serious about learning how to sew an 1870s or 1880s day dress.

Class starts today!  

Through 6 lessons we'll cover all the bases needed for a complete bustle dress. Each lesson has a minimum of 3 videos (and many lessons have 4 or more) along with a packed accompanying PDF handout!

You get over 4.5 hours of video tutorials!


This is an intermediate level sewing class. You should understand basic sewing techniques including how to set in a sleeve, buttonholes, and basic hand stitches. Advanced processes such as fitting tips and methods will be touched on, but for the most part we'll stick to the patterns.

The priority is for you to understand how a bustle dress goes together and what goes into making these beautiful gowns. Understand the basics then you'll be able to explore more advanced designs.

This class will focus on the specific topic of making a bustle dress project so we can saturate the knowledge and improve our skills. We'll explore the various parts of a bustle gown including the foundation skirt, overskirt and bodice.  

"Jennifer, this was a great experience! I learned a lot about period correct methods that simply can't be found in contemporary sewing instruction. And I learned the methods make the look! Thanks again for your concise lessons!" ~Donna Knower



Exciting Lesson Plans Prepared for You:

Lesson 1: Discuss design ideas, fabric selections and taking measurements

Lesson 2: Sewing the foundation/underskirt

Lesson 3: Sewing the overskirt

Lesson 4: Bodice mockup & fitting

Lesson 5: Bodice pattern alterations & construction

Lesson 6: Finishing the bodice

  NOTE: We will be making, in order, the foundation skirt, overskirt and bodice in this class. Undergarments, including corset and bustle support, are NOT covered. Please visit the Victorian Undergarments Online Class for those items.


"I never would have done it without you, Jen!! Your videos were so helpful, as were the handouts. We had enough time to finish the project, (but not too much to forget about it!) I love my dress I am so proud of myself for finishing it!." ~Jeri Bills 


"Thanks so much for an awesome class... and also for making it continuously INSPIRING. I loved it. I am so pleased with how much I learnt, and I know I will always have these skills now." ~Karen Lorraine 


Although an 1870s or 80s bustle dress can be quite complicated, it really starts with basic shapes that are then tortured (ha!) & trimmed into the design you want.

For this project, we'll be using the ever popular Truly Victorian patterns. (Specific patterns will be listed to those who register for the class.) You get to choose which bustle era you want to make: Early Bustle 1870s, Natural Form Era, or Late Bustle 1880s. It's your choice! 

As with all of our classes, you may choose to use other patterns but be aware that the specific steps of each lesson will cover the class-specific Truly Victorian patterns.


Valuable Skills & Techniques You'll Learn:

    • Fabrics to use in bustle dresses including underlinings
    • When & how to flatline
    • Setting in a skirt placket
    • Pleating the skirts to a waistband
    • Hem finishing techniques
    • Attaching ties to skirts to give them proper bustle pouf
    • Bodice fitting tips
    • Constructing a bodice in the correct order
    • Pattern sizing and adjustments
    • Finishing a bodice with period techniques
    • Trimming the skirts and bodice for a cohesive look


 "I have basically participated in all of Jennifer Rosbrugh's online classes. I just love how clear and concise and easy to follow her instructions are. No matter what, I always learn something new." ~Susanne Hughes

 "Jennifer, thank you so much for running this class. I learned a lot about fitting and really enjoyed the class. I know I will be referring to the lessons again." ~Cathy Leeson

"Thank you so much! I've learned a lot and am much more confident in my skills now. It's a wonderful class especially for international students." ~Tanya Itkin


Please Note:

We now have an on-going private Facebook group for this class! When you sign up for this class an invite from FB to join the group will be sent to your email within 24 hours. Welcome!

NEW!! Those not wanting the class access but want to participate in a group specifically sewing 1870s & 1880s fashions with professional help and guidance can sign up for group access only.


 Intermediate Level Class

If you have sewing experience but are new to historical garments, you will feel comfortable here. We'll be following the patterns closely so you should be able to keep up with the class just fine.

If you are new to sewing, this may not be the best class for you at this time. You do need to know how to set in a sleeve. Perhaps starting with a basic chemise and drawers class would be better so you don't become frustrated with techniques that are beyond your current skills.

If you are advanced in your sewing skills, you are welcome! Maybe you simply need the class as accountability for your time so your dress gets done. Use the homework assignments to push you forward. :-)




Class begins when you're ready. All six lessons are available to you upon successful registration and do not expire.

Be sure to download & print the handouts too for future projects!


On-Demand class includes 6 full sewing lessons with 4.5 hours of video instruction and complete PDF handouts with homework assignments, access to our private Facebook group, and a super fun sewing project!

Group Only access is available! Join us for fun sewing of Bustle Era dresses in an encouraging environment and professional help.  


Upon successful class registration students will receive a download link at checkout, and also an email from SkyPilot with the link, to download the first PDF of class to access the Welcome page that contains a list of supplies needed, how to order the patterns, along with access to the class lesson pages. The fun begins right away!

An invitation from Facebook to join our private group will be sent to your email within 24 hours. 

Thank you for the opportunity to sew with you!!

Jennifer Rosbrugh, instructor       

P.S. The class lessons are entirely online and self-paced with no specific day or time required to be online. You work at your own speed and schedule. Read the lessons and watch the videos when it's most convenient for you. Pop into the FB group with questions, work-in-progress photos, or resources you've found.

Attention EU students: our classes & workshops fall under the new 1/1/2015 digital VAT regulations. All online classes and workshops will have your EU country's VAT tax rate added at checkout. Class prices shown do not include VAT.

Related products