In the 19th century, costumed skating carnivals and balls were very popular social activities. Take a look at some photos of Canadians in "fancy dress" which provided amusement but was also controlled by a complex set of moral restrictions.
During the 18th Century, fashion was quite important for men; it was a mark of social class. Frock coats, morning coats, waistcoats and tuxedos were popular with fashionable and wealthy men in the 1890s.
This video describes the period 1840-67 which was an age of "domesticity" for Canadian women. Appearances were very important; daughters were educated to be modest and virtuous, and young wives to be industrious and self-sacrificing.
In the 19th century, fashion changed rapidly, with distinct styles appearing. The women's attire held in the McCord Museum collection, and showcased in this video, provides an illustration of the stylistic changes of this period.