All posts filed under: 19th Century

Rate the Dress: red velvet spencer

Last week I showed you a very fashion forward lady of 1914, to mixed reviews.  Some of you simply didn’t like the period, others simply didn’t like the way the ensemble wouldn’t suit most figures, and most of you weren’t too keen on the hat.  But lots of you did like it: thought it elegant, avant gard, and just ‘zingy’ enough to be interesting.  It rated a 7.4 out of 10 (it would have been a higher score if the two people who said they loved it, with exclamation points, had rated it!) As the next HSF challenge that I’m supposed to write a (well overdue) inspiration post for is the HSF Choice Gentlemen challenge, I thought showing you a bit of menswear-inspired fashion was appropriate. As soon as I selected this item I also realised that it is exactly the 1810s version of the 1910s suit I showed you last week: luxurious, slightly quirky, both very practical and very unpractical, very feminine with a nod to menswear, and possibly, just a tiny bit silly. Last …

Rate the Dress: Charles Worth in 1897

Last week I showed you a striped 1860s number, and pointed out that the stripes weren’t aligned as we would expect them to be.  Oh foolish me!  Having had it pointed out, you all obsessed about the stripe placement, and were rather harsh on the poor gown (I know there was a tiny mis-match as well, but other than that, I actually though the unusual stripe action on the chevrons made the gown far more interesting and dynamic than a ‘normal’ stripe placement).  Beyond the stripes, some of you decried it as quite dull and blah.  Poor frock!  Some did love it though so it managed a 7.4 out of 10. I’m quite obsessed with the late 1890s at the moment: the stiff, A-line skirts, the focus on menswear inspired tailoring, the pleating, the peculiar puffed sleeves. This House of Worth evening gown from ca. 1897 is the perfect summation of the whole look.  The skirt, with its heavy folds and widening gores.  The juxtaposition of the über-feminine pink floral warp-patterned silk with a strong, tailored …

Rate the Dress: Walking in Stripes in the late 1860s

Last week I showed you a Regency era fashion plate that featured a decidedly interesting evening dress.  Opinions on the dress were decidedly divided: you either thought it was fabulous (with small caveats about the peplum and bodice trim), or hated it.  And you either thought it would be even more fabulous on a body, or far less fabulous!  So most scores were either well below 5, or well above 5, resulting in a rating of 7.4 out of 10.  Wackiness and all, I guess more of you liked it than not! This week’s Rate the Dress in a little toned down compared to last week, but it does carry on the peplum theme. This striped walking ensemble features a fitted bodice, a bustled skirt, and a separate belt with false peplum. The dressmaker has made full use of the stripes: arranging them vertically, horizontally, and on the bias.  But the striped usage isn’t always what we’d expect: note how the bias chevrons down the front don’t form further ‘V’ shapes, but crook at angles across …