Thursday, October 4, 2007

Regency Fashion for October

Wow, here we are heading for the Canadian Thanksgiving next week end. After that I will be in Seattle at the Emerald City Writers Conference and my first booksigning for No Regrets with my American Title sister Gerri Russell.

October of course signals that winter is just around the corner. But what did our fashion mavens decide we should wear.

Here we are in the year before the Regency actually begins in October 1811.

Now just look at this outfit from La Belle Assemblee. This is a tunic of sky-blue-silk, the buttons down the front are self covered with the same silk. Over that is loose short dress of plain India Muslin. the long sleeves and the front of the dress is trimmed with a quilling of lace, and tied down with bows of white satin ribbon and deep French lace flounced round the hem. Ribbons blue Persian confine the arms and form the sash. A white lace hood, lined with blue, and double quilling of French net in the front tops of the outfit. It is worn here with pale buff kid slippers.

I must say I am not so keen on the hood, but the gown itself looks comfortable and the high neck would help keep our lady warm in the cooler mornings of October.

This gown is from 1814, and is clearly an evening gown. This one comes from Paris via the Journal des Dames et Des Modes. the triple row of lace at the bottom of the underskirt is stunning as is the embroidered decoration on the overdress. I just can't get with the turban though. Still, if it is all the rage, I am sure we are wearing it.

These two plates seem to really show the progression during this period. The earlier gown is flowing and more classic, the later one the fuller skirt leading into the hoop skirts of the next era. Yet the high waist still lingers, along with the low cut neckline for evening. Remember that at this time, English women had just discovered French fashions again. By 1818, Napoleon was safely ensconced on Saint Helena. Poor man. He caused lots of trouble, but that does seem like a very uncomfortable thing to do to a person.

I have a friend who comes from Saint Helena. His mother still livers there. One of these days I would love to visit that tiny isolated island.

That is all until next time. Until then Happy rambles.