All posts tagged: 19th Century

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: Worth takes on three centuries of fashion

Last week’s Rate the dress took us to the 1740s.  This week we’re travelling back in time half a century to ca. 1690, AND forward half a century to ca. 1790, and finishing up ca. 1890, all in one dress.  Only Worth would try that!  But did he succeed? Last week: An unknown young lady of ca. 1740 by Bartholemew Dandridge I’m always a bit trepidatious when I post a historical child for Rate the Dress because of the children-as-adults issue.  Luckily the response to our girl-on-the-cusp-of-adolescence was (almost) unanimously positive.  You thought she was perfectly dressed for a young lady in her first almost-grown-up frock, with the ideal balance of frills and boldness. The Total: 9.3 out of 10 It was the princess dress to appeal to both our inner little-girl and our more critical adult selves! This week: A House of Worth Reception gown of ca. 1890 This grape purple and pale gold Worth reception gown from ca 1890 is heavy on the historicism.  It has a skirt inspired by mantua fashionable in …

Ball gown, Emile Pingat (French active-1860–96) ca. 1864, French, silk, Metropolitan Museum of Art C.I.69.33.12a–c

Rate the Dress: An enormous Pingat ballgown

I enjoyed looking for examples of Pingat creations so much while writing my review of ‘My Official Wife’ that I had to choose one for today’s Rate the Dress.  To give a contrast to the ca. 1890s fashion of Savage’s novel, and the almost-modern dress Adrian dress from last week, I went with an 1860s ballgown big enough to smuggle an entire aviaries worth of budgerigars underneath. Last week: A cubist inspired Gilbert Adrian evening ensemble An interesting, but not surprising, mix of reactions to the Adrian dress.  I say not surprising, because I had a little spare time (for once!) when I wrote the rate the dress, and a made a list of predictions of what would be said – and you hit every one of them, from muddy colour complaints to notes of wrinkles (sans a comparison to mushrooms 😉 ).  And added the bit about it reminding you of Neapolitan ice cream. I’m glad I wasn’t quite alone in thinking that a bit of mint makes Neapolitan so much better. The Total: 7 …