After the full-skirted style of 1850s and 1860s in western countries, 1870sin fashion can be distinguished by the slow return of the taperedsilhouette. The innovations witnessed in case of men’s clothing in this periodinclude the approval ofattractive or outlined fabricsfor shirts and usual substitution of neckties, fastened in bow knots by meansof four-in-hand.
Likeprevious decades frock coat was considered fashionable even in this decade, butthey appeared in shorter versions, differentiated from the sack coat by a waistline. Waistcoats were usually cut straight across the front. Collars and lapelswere a part of the coat; nevertheless men were also seen wearing collarlesswaistcoats.
Threepiece suits known as ditto suitscomprised of a high-buttoned sack coat with identical waistcoat andtrousers, gained more popularity. The sack coat was mostly a cutaway so thatthe top button only could be fixed firmly.
Men duringthese ten years wore cutaway morning coat while attending casual day occasionswhereas frock coats were formal daytime outfits. A dark color tail coat andtrousers was considered as a proper evening dress. A shirt with a wingedcollar, white bow tie was worn as an ideal evening wear.
Men inthis decade wore full-length trousers for most of the occasions, whereas theywore tweed or woollen breeches while going out for hunting and hiking.
Necktiestyles incorporated the four-in-hand and the Ascot tie, a tie with broad wingsand a tapered neckband, fixed firmly with a jewel or stickpin, gainedpopularity towards the end of the decade.
In placeswith tropical weather, a narrow ribbon tie was worn as an alternative tonecktie.
1870s in fashion witnessed women wearing dresses with tight sleevesand square necklines. Day dresses were featured with closed, squared, or V-shaped high necklines. Womenfrequently decorated the overskirts to give an effect of apron from the front.
Eveninggowns were seen with low neckline and undersized, off-the-shoulder sleeves.They were worn along with short gloves. Later on women wore mid-length gloves.
The "anti-fashion"for Artistic dress with its "medieval" particulars and uncorsetedlines kept continuing throughout the decade under the pressure of thePre-Raphaelite Brotherhood and other artistic reformers.
Women during this decade pulled back theirtresses at the sides and wore it in a high knot or bunch of ringlets,over the brow. Use of false hair was more common. Small hats, with a few veils,were balanced on top of the head and brimmed straw hats were used while goingoutside in summer.
Upperclass men in this period used top hats as a formal wear whereas soft hats withdifferent shapes were used while attending informal occasions. They wore flatstraw boaters during yachting and sailing past times