All posts tagged: Edwardian

May detail, Cycle of frescos of the twelve labors of the months, Trento (Italy), Castello del Buonconsiglio (Bishops Castle), Torre del'Aquila (Tower of the eagle), otherwise unknown Master Wenceslas of Bohemia, after 1397

The Historical Sew Monthly 2018: Inspiration for Challenge #5: Specific to a Time of Day or Year

The Historical Sew Monthly 2018 is well underway now, and it’s my duty and honour to write the inspiration post for our fifth challenge of the year: Specific to a Time (of Day or Year). I was slightly panicked when I realised this theme would fall to me.  I’m not at all an expert at pre-1700s fashions, and this is a challenge that’s particularly tricky before the 19th century (ish), when specific garments for different times of day became common.  But with help from my awesome co-moderators, I’ve found examples from a range of eras – enjoy! In chronological order: This ca. 1400 cycle of frescos of the months from the Castello del Buonconsiglio in Trento, Italy, provides a wonderful look at late Medieval fashions by season, with warm layers for winter snowfights: Flowing garments for spring romance (note the love-knots on the gentleman’s tunic): And sunhats and light shirts (and sandals!) for harvest labours.  The sunhats do double duty for this challenge, being both daytime, and summer, specific: Elizabethan costume plates also show wonderful …

Evening dress in two parts, Mrs. C. Donovan, New York (Designer), silk, sequins, via

Rate the Dress: Edwardian Embellishment, American style

This week’s Rate the Dress turns from bold primary hues on black, to soft pastels overlaid with sheer black organza, and from sleek ’20s, to frothy Edwardian. Last week: a 1920s little black dress with very bright beading by Patou The beaded and embroidered Patou number got a range of reactions.  Some of you absolutely loved it, and others thought the beading wasn’t quite resolved.  One of you docked points for the moustache belt, which I am confused by.  How on earth is a moustache belt a bad thing? 😉 I was intrigued by the number of commenters who felt that some 20s dresses ‘wear heavy’, and that this was one of them. The Total: 8.2 out of 10 A full point lower than the week before!  We’re slipping! This week: An Edwardian Evening Dress This dress (despite its weird pin-head) has been on my Rate the Dress list for some time, and this week seemed like the perfect time to showcase it. European dressmakers seem to get all the glory when it comes to Victorian …

ca. 1907 Edwardian swimsuit by

Can you swim in a worsted wool Edwardian swimsuit? Let’s find out!

Yesterday I showed you my reproduction worsted wool Edwardian swimsuit.  Everyone wanted to know if I actually swam in it, and if you could swim in it.  Obviously I wondered this as well.  The swimsuit was lovely to frolic on the beach on, but could it actually work as a swimsuit. So I gave it a try! My reproduction swimsuit was made from worsted wool serge, and consists of a jumpsuit with attached bloomers, and an overskirt.  Both garments button down the front. I chose to swim with bare legs and feet.  While fashion plates generally show shoes and stockings there are enough period photographs that show wading women with swimsuits and bare lower limbs to make this equally plausible for a full swim. For the first swim I jumped off a little dock at Hataitai/Evan’s Bay beach.  It’s a popular swimming spot (as evinced by all the kids watching me), and very calm and safe, so a good place to try out the swimsuit. My first mini swim showed: It’s definitely possible to swim …