All posts tagged: 1880s

Day Dress, Augustine Martin, Wool, Silk, Metal, ca 1880, France, Drexel Museum

Rate the Dress: Blue & Brown Bustle Era

It’s always so interesting to see why people do or don’t like a dress: because it appeals to them intellectually, or on a purely aesthetic level.  Because it would look good on you, or wouldn’t.  Because you can imagine it on you, or because you can imagine it on exactly the right person who is very different to you.  Because you like the era, or don’t.  Because it reminds you of a dress you owned and loved, or something you got made to wear, and hate. So many reasons… Last week: a 1910s dress in peach pink and cinnamon silk Last week’s dress rating was really one that lived and died on people’s associations.  It got some really high scores, and some really, really low scores.  And a lot of middling scores, which rather perfectly match the final total of… The Total: 7.3 out of 10 And the score droops and deflates like the limp drapes of the dress itself… This week: a brown & blue bustle-era dress I have a fascination with historical dresses made …

http://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/159169

Rate the Dress: Late Victorian totally un-neutral

Last week’s dress was deemed quietly elegant and almost offensively in-offensive.  Beautiful (excepting, perhaps the sleeve bows), but too retiring and neutral to inspire much passion on either end (excepting, perhaps, once again, when it came to the bows).  So this week I’ve chosen a dress, that while in (technically) neutral shades of browns & blacks, and sleek in silhouette, is determinedly un-neutral in every other respect.  You might, in the end, decide it is also elegant, but not for reasons of quietude! Last week: early Victorian neutrals Things I took away from your responses: You thought the dress was pretty but ultimately a little boring. You don’t like brown. You really, really didn’t like those sleeve bows. But even if you don’t like brown and bows you recognise and reward good construction. The Total: 8.4 Exactly the rating that a dress that would be supremely appropriate at any event without ever drawing attention to itself would be expected to get.  And I learned a lot about early Victorian trims that kind of look like …

Rate the Dress: a proper polonaise dress

This week Rate the Dress is going from not-a-polonaise to actually-a-polonaise, with dresses separated in time by a century.  Last week’s was exquisitely presented, this week’s choice less so – but hopefully you’ll find it no less worthy of comment. Last week: a painted silk ca 1780s not-a-polonaise. You thought this dress was practically perfect in every way: it even racked up a total of 360 points: a round of applause if I ever saw one!  It lost a few points for the not-matched but not-not matched bodice, which I quite expected.  But otherwise…pretty much fabulous. The Total: 9.5/10 Woot woot! This week: Since last week’s dress wasn’t an actual polonaise, I thought I’d pick a real one this week.  Not a real 18th century polonaise dress, but one from another era that used the term. 1870s and 1880s ‘polonaise’ dresses were bustle dresses with the bodice and bustling overskirt cut in one, and the bustling overskirt opening over the (often contrasting) underskirt in a V, inspired by 18th century dresses which opened over petticoats. …