Monday, March 2, 2015

Fashions for March 1836

Monday, March 2, 2015
Velvet walking dress
Loretta reports:

According to some fashion magazines, the ginormous sleeves of the 1830s start slimming down late in 1835.  And yet not everybody got the message or liked it, because we continue to see big sleeves into 1836, as illustrated here.  This dress caught my eye because it seems a fairly sane choice for changeable March weather in London or in Paris and because it must have looked and felt so luxurious.

What puzzles me in this picture is the clock.  It looks vaguely familiar.  Does anybody know what it is?







Dress description
 

Fashions & description from The Lady’s Magazine & Museum, March 1836

Clicking on the image will enlarge it.  Clicking on the caption will allow you to read at the source, where you can learn more and enlarge images as needed.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

It depicts Time with his scythe, or is that not what you mean?

Anonymous said...

I would never want to wear one of those dresses. Imagine putting on a coat over it. One could make two regency gowns out of the material-- or maybe even three.
I think one would have to be of substantial size to be able to carry the weight of the dress. Such a silly fashion. yet-- it can look beautiful in a fashion picture.

Mary O'Keefe Kellogg said...

I agree with the other poster: it's one of those clocks with Father Time (or Death) meant to remind the viewer to get his life in order before it was too late.

As for the sleeves, not only were they so enormous that no coat would have fit, only a cloak, but the cut of the shoulder - to give a "demure," sloping line - had no gusset and made it impossible to raise one's arms.

Chris Woodyard said...

The clock sculpture looks like something by Thorwaldsen, but I can't place the specific image. Here's an 1880s clock in a similar vein. http://www.nationaltrustcollections.org.uk/object/850807

Georgie Wickham said...
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Georgie Wickham said...
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Georgie Wickham said...

I think I shall be lowering the tone of this extremely enjoyable, well-informed blog by suggesting the clock looks just like Phileas Fogg in the highly individual credits to Around the World in Eighty Days (the amazing Saul Bass). http://ifitshipitshere.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/the-saul-bass-google-doodle-tribute-and.html

LorettaChase said...

Yes, it does look like Father Time. But it did puzzle me, such a moralistic image on a fashion plate. And then the cloak sort of looked like wings. I've seen Mercury for a clock, and Cupid, and other Greek & Roman myth figures. Father Time & his scythe seems so somber in this context.

LorettaChase said...

Mary, you're right about the difficulties of fitting a coat over these sleeves. The solution was a cloak or cape, often cut out in front or made in a sloping shape so that you could get your hands out from under without bunching up the cape. There's an example here:
http://www.lapl.org/collections-resources/visual-collections/ladys-magazine-198

Meg said...

Actually I'm more interested in what is going on with her fur piece. It appears to widen on the shoulder, so is it a capelet with fur ties, or a tippet that just widens out about the neck and shoulders? I'm not surprised that a moralizing note is included in a fashion plate of this time, the Victorian values were in by this time and the gay abandon of the Georgian era ended.

 
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