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Rate the Dress: A Glory of Green

This week we’re going from vibrant purple to restful green, and from a almost universally popular timeperiod, to one that’s a bit less of a guaranteed crowd pleaser. Can it score a hat-trick of 9.5+ ratings (without any hats involved)?

Last Week: a 1912 evening dress by Lucile

So many of you loved everything about this dress, and even those who didn’t rate it a perfect 10 only had the tiniest quibbles with its design: finding the colour not quite perfect, or the beads a bit clunky. Even so, it didn’t score a single rating under 8. A real crowd pleaser!

The Total: 9.6 out of 10

Just one point shy of the week before.

This week: an 1830s dress in morning glory patterned silk

Last week’s dress was an easy pick for popularity. Almost everyone loves the early 1910s!

The 1830s though? Up until quite recently they have been one of the least favourite decades for historical fashion. However, thanks to avid championing from rockstar costumers like American Duchess (and other talented costumers), the 1830s are seeing a definite rise in interest.

If you’re already an 1830s fan, will this week’s dress scratch your Romantic era itch? Or if you aren’t yet a convert, perhaps this will be the dress to bring you over to the bright-and-very-big-sleeved side? Or perhaps not…

Dress with gigot sleeves, jacquard woven silk, ca. 1835 Fashion Museum Bath
Dress with gigot sleeves, jacquard woven silk, ca. 1835 Fashion Museum Bath

This 1830s dress is made from pale green silk, with a jacquard woven damask pattern of morning glories.

Dress with gigot sleeves, jacquard woven silk, ca. 1835 Fashion Museum Bath
Dress with gigot sleeves, jacquard woven silk, ca. 1835 Fashion Museum Bath

It features the typical just-above-the-natural waistline of the 1830s, finished with a wide ribbon belt (possibly a styling addition by the museum, so you may choose not to put too much weight on it in your rating). It’s been paired with a delicately embroidered fichu: a common daytime accessory in fashion plates of the period.

Dress with gigot sleeves, jacquard woven silk, ca. 1835 Fashion Museum Bath
Dress with gigot sleeves, jacquard woven silk, ca. 1835 Fashion Museum Bath

The main area of design interest in the dress is that iconic feature of 1830s fashion: enormous gigot sleeves. These ones are gathered in to fit the armhole with narrow pleating, held in place with bands of ribbon arranged in poofs and secured with jaunty bows. Below the ribbon they fall in soft fullness, and are cut a little longer than the arm, so their extra length droops over the crisply pleated cuffs.

Dress with gigot sleeves, jacquard woven silk, ca. 1835 Fashion Museum Bath
Dress with gigot sleeves, jacquard woven silk, ca. 1835 Fashion Museum Bath

What do you think? Are you pro 1830s and think this one’s perfect? Or pr 1830s, but think you’ve seen much prettier examples? Or still not a huge fan, but can admire this as a lovely example of its type? Or just no-gigot no way?

Rate the Dress on a Scale of 1 to 10

A reminder about rating – feel free to be critical if you don’t like a thing, but make sure that your comments aren’t actually insulting to those who do like a garment.  Phrase criticism as your opinion, rather than a flat fact. Our different tastes are what make Rate the Dress so interesting.  It’s no fun when a comment implies that anyone who doesn’t agree with it, or who would wear a garment, is totally lacking in taste. 

As usual, nothing more complicated than a .5.  I also hugely appreciate it if you only do one rating, and set it on a line at the very end of your comment.

36 Comments

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