These two ladies demonstrate the latest fashion worn in the latter part of the 1870s. The dresses they wear show a full image. But the bustle in the back of the dress gives a typical shape of the dressing fashion in that period. The bustle design makes the dress fuller, but the additional decoration on the dress also brings the attention to the fullness it reveals.
The bustle design is one of the most prominent features in the victorian dresses. It is made of heavy fabric intended to pull the back of a skirt down and flatten it. Fullness of some sort was still considered necessary to make the waist look smaller and the bustle eventually replaced the crinoline completely.
You may have doubts about how the bustled dress could stay in setted place and draped so well. There is a cage made of the metal material inside of the dresses. There are other kind of bustle applied into the victorian dresses. Except the added cage inside, the luxuriant ruffled design also could achieve the fullness of the dresses.