Shaping the Romantic Era
1830s undergarments: To keep the enormous sleeves of the dress from collapsing, large cotton pillows, called "plumpers" filled with eiderdown attached at the upper arms. Corded petticoats were worn to support the full skirt. Like the corset cording, the insertion of cotton ropes into casings around the petticoat made the material firm, yet flexible. Only after these undergarments were secured was the outer gown slipped over a woman's head and settled onto this ideal foundation.
18th century. The hoops were also made of linen and stiffened with whalebone or cane. They shaped the petticoat of the gown to the appropriate silhouette. At various times in the 18th century this profile varied from round, to square and flat, to fan-shaped.