Monday, June 7, 2010

June Fashions 1820 and 1829

Monday, June 7, 2010
Loretta reports:

I thought to do a little compare and contrast today.  These June fashions illustrate how women’s dress changed between 1820 and 1829.  By the later date, the waistline’s come down, the skirt is swelling out, and sleeves are starting the steady increase in pouffiness that will reach a truly entertaining phase in the 1830s.

No 1.—FANCY BALL DRESS. White slip of gros-de-Naples,* under a frock of fine net, richly embroidered with silver, and trimmed in the most splendid manner with geranium colour and roses of real silver lama.** Head-dress a diadem bandeau of diamonds, with a regal coronet and plume of white feathers. White shoes of figured gros-de-Naples, and white kid gloves.

From La Belle Assemblée.  Publisher J. Bell, 1820

No. VI.] JUNE, 1829. [PRICE 2S.

Dress of Aurora colour crêpe aërophane*** over a satin slip of the same colour; the corsage made close to the shape, displaying to advantage the fine formed bust; it is made extremely low on the shoulders, and adorned in the centre and sides with pinnatifid**** columns of satin ; the sleeve short and very full; the skirt is ornamented by tucks half a quarter wide, extending half way up the dress : pinnatifid columns extend perpendicularly, and give a grace and finish to this novel kind of dress.

The head-dress is composed of an Aurora coloured hat, profusely decorated with large plumes d'Autriche and large bows of striped gauze riband ; under the brim of the hat, on the left side, is placed a rosette, composed of blonde***** and riband, like that which decorates the crown. Pearl necklace ; white satin shoes and sandals ; white kid gloves.

R. Ackermann's Repository of fashions [4th ser. of the Repository of arts, literature, fashions, manufactures].Published1829

*"a corded Italian silk similar to Irish poplin; 'lutestring, now termed gros de Naples'" (English Women's Clothing of the Nineteenth Century, C. Willett Cunnington)
***thin crinkled semi-transparent fabric
****like fern fronds
*****silk lace


Rowenna said...

Nice to see that, despite the other changes, ostrich feathers don't go out of style :) You can just keep pulling those out season after season!

Mme.Tresbeau said...

I have to say I like the later dress better. I like the lower waistline, the bigger sleeves, and the Aurora color is gorgeous.

Annis said...

I vote for the golden dress too. More dramatic.

Isabella Bradford/Susan Holloway Scott said...

I like the ostriche plumes, too. As Rowenna says, plumes are always in style -- though they do seem to have flourished between the two pictures. Miracle-Gro for feathers! *g*

La Modiste said...

Beautiful plates. I do enjoy them. Thank you for posting.

One quibble: 'Gros de Naples' is not a more modern term for lutestrings. (Cunnington can be devil-may-care when it comes to textiles.) They are different fabrics. Gros de Naples is a heavy, plain weave fabric with a corded surface effect, and is also called Gros de Tours and Gros de Rhine. Lutestring is a light, crisp silk with a high luster. Lutestrings are still called lutestrings today, even when woven of modern polyester, and they are still popular for use in bridesmaids and prom dresses.

nightsmusic said...

I think both dresses are lovely, though I could do without those poufy flower things all over the skirt of the earlier dress. Those kinds of things just aren't me. I'm afraid I'd have been considered a 'plain dresser' back then. Though I love the beautiful fabrics, I don't care for the fussy additions that were so common.

LorettaChase said...

I do favor the golden dress, too. It must have been stunning in real life, shimmering like a golden dawn. Regarding gros de Naples: the part in single quotation marks is Cunnington quoting a "Mrs. Papendiek." A Google Book search tells me this lady was Assistant-Keeper of the Wardrobe and Reader to Queen Charlotte. A quick scan of books & dictionaries gives me the impression that they might have been more casual about the term "lutestring," in her time.

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