19th Century

Notes on a Perfect Victorian Figure

I describe Julia as having a perfect Victorian figure.

And I also describe Lillie Langtry II as having a perfect Victorian figure.

Clearly Julia and Lillie don’t have the same figure.

Julia has the perfect Victorian figure in the minds of fashion designers of the era: tall, slim, softly curved, small of waist and round of bosom without being voluptuous.  Her figure could be the model for every woman ever drawn in a fashion plate between 1870 and 1890.

Magasin des Demoiselles, August 10th 1876

Lillie II, on the other hand, has the figure of Lillie Langtry and La Belle Otero, the figure that every (well, most) Victorian men ermmm…idealised (well, you know what I mean!).  Tiny waists, full hips and bosom, and petite enough to still be pickupable.

Lillie Langtry (the original) covers her curves in 18th century costume

La Belle Otero shows off her famous figure

I guess some things don’t change.  What fashion dictates and what men desire from a woman’s body is rarely the same thing.  I guess we should just love what we have and ignore the rest!