All posts tagged: 1750s

Rate the Dress: Arabella in all the ruffles

I was rather surprised at how many people didn’t like last week’s ivory and gold lace-embellished frock.  I thought, in the general scheme of ca 1850 evening wear, it was rather fetching without being too frou-frou, and while a lot of you agreed with me (Kate said everything I might have by describing it as “Sweet and demure, but lustrous and rich, ethereal and pretty”), a lot of you also thought it was totally blah and forgettable. So it only came in at 7.4 out of 10 – not very impressive at all. Since I promised colour, this week’s Rate the Dress goes back a century to another lace-embellished ballgown. Here is Arabella Astley Swimmer in a very pink frock embellished with poofs and ruffles in delicate white silk, with spangles in silver, and beads in black. I’ve provided two version of the image: a smaller one, with slightly better quality details, and a larger version. Arabella is shown carrying a masquerade mask, but that reflects more of the fashion in portraiture than that her dress …

Rate the Dress: Hedvig Charlotta in mid 18th century candy stripes

Well dear readers, you have spoken on the 1860s cotton wedding dress, and the verdict is in: you LOVE it!  Well, most of you.  The ruffles were a bit much for some, and that era does come with its own cultural baggage, so the rating came in at a still very approving 8.7 out of 10.   It would have been even higher but for the half dozen of you who were so overcome by love that you forgot to include a rating in your “LOVE, ZOMG, WANT, DROOL etc.” posts!  If you don’t give a rating I can’t really count it! Will this week’s Rate the Dress also meet your approval and continue the winning streak? I present influential Swedish poet and feminist, Hedvig Charlotta Nordenflycht, caught in the act of writing a poem by Swedish artist Ulrika Pasch. Hedvig is very modishly attired in a pink robe with striped ribbon trimmings (do they remind you of peppermint candies?  Or licorice allsorts?  This outfit always makes me crave lollies!), lace cuffs, and a lace capelet. …

Rate the Dress: a 17th century Allegory of Astrology

Last week you either appreciated the mix of simplicity and complexity in the floral bedecked late 1820’s frock, and rated it highly, or really hated either the fabric or period and rated it poorly, or experienced a mix of the two elements with a resulting middle-of-the-road vote.  The first tipped the scales just enough to bring in a rating of 7.2 out of 10 – a bit above average. It may be coming into summer here in New Zealand, but I’m reminded that many of you are moving into winter, and (based on my latest poll) looking forward to celebrating Christmas. So, just to mess with your heads, I’m presenting this nice warm, snuggly, Christmas-coloured 17th century rate the dress, which actually isn’t Christmas-y at all, because it’s a portrait of a lady posing as an Allegory of Astrology.  What makes her an Allegory, I’ve never figure out.*  And also, on second thought, that neckline isn’t really very warm and snuggly after all. So, with a bit of confusion carefully established, what do you make …