I chose this set of fashion plates because it gives us a chance to compare the London and Parisian styles—and try to see what if anything distinguishes them from each other. You might want also to compare them to the August 1831 fashions.
I excerpted a bit of the General Observations mainly because of the use of the Regency term so similar to to today’s fashionista.
EXPLANATION OF THE PRINTS OF FASHION.
No. 1.—Morning Visiting Dress.
White muslin dress, made partially low, and trimmed with a profusion of fine lace about the body and sleeves, with three narrow flounces of lace round the border. Cornette composed of tulle and white satin ribband, with the ends unfastened, and surmounted by a full half wreath of small Provence roses. The hair entirely parted from the forehead, and arranged in full curls on each side. Gloves and shoes of very pale pink kid.
No. 2.—Parisian Walking Dress.
Round high dress of fine cambric, or jacconet muslin, ornamented at the bottom with four rows of Vandyck trimming of rich embroidery, surmounted by a flounce vandyked at the edge. Full sleeves of muslin, à-la-Duchesse de Berri, confined by bands of embroidered cambric, and surmounted by imperial wings of clear muslin. Treble ruff of broad lace, and sash of muslin, the ends trimmed with lace of a Vandyke pattern. Bonnet of Leghorn ornamented with ears of Indian corn, and turned up slightly in front. Shoes of lilac kid. The hair in full curls, dressed forward.
FASHION AND DRESS.
The precarious state of the weather, with the departure from town of several fashionists belonging to the higher classes, and the more serious causes of emigration, have rendered the modern toilette less subject to fluctuation than might otherwise have been expected.
—La Belle Assemblée, 1816
There’s a big difference in how we use history. But we’re equally nuts about it. To us, the everyday details of life in the past are things to talk about, ponder, make fun of -- much in the way normal people talk about their favorite reality show.
We talk about who’s wearing what and who’s sleeping with whom. We try to sort out rumor or myth from fact. We thought there must be at least three other people out there who think history’s fascinating and fun, too. This blog is for them.