There is a myth that women gave up corsets in the early 1800’s and that’s just not true. A corset, or stays if you prefer, provides a fair bit of support for women, just like a modern bra. They did, however, alter the look of their undergarments. The long corset on the left is from about 1810, though I have seen similar things cited with later dates. I’m afraid I don’t know enough about women’s underwear in the early 1800’s to be sure.
Flora’s other dress is a basic house dress- something worn for work as much as anything else. I based it off of this dress though I simplified the skirt. I’d like to draw a few shawls, since they were such a standard garment of the day, but I haven’t decided how to do them yet.
It’s nearly Saturday and I am quite wiped out. I went out for drinks with some people after work and then came home and did a bit of cleaning. It was fun, but also tiring after a long intense week of work. This weekend I’ll be taking it easy and hopefully getting some more paper dolling done. It’s humid and hot here- so hot I can feel it on my skin. I very much dislike the heat and would take a rainstorm over this any day.
I am not at my most coherent today, so I offer up these dresses and a reminder that I have a poll in the sidebar.
For another sort of paper fashions, check out Pulp Fashion: The Art of Isabelle de Borchgrave, a show organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco featuring fantastic costumes made from paper. The word “astonishing” comes to mind when describing them.
There’s quite a few other Regency paper dolls out there. I thought I would call attention to a few of them along with today’s Flora post. Monica posted a regency dress of her own over at her blog. It’s a beautiful blue and brown one. I feel like I should promote other regency paper doll costume since that’s what Flora is all about. Liana has done some regency paper doll dresses as well with this white one being my favorite. Or, if you want something full color and beautiful, there’s always Helen Page’s Regency Lady of Quality which is lovely, if not terribly historically accurate.
As for the current set of dresses for Flora, we have a walking costume based on a fashion plate from 1812 and a day dress based on the fact that I have a circles template that I don’t use often enough. Also, I wanted to do something with a pattern. Patterns kinda scare me, so I am trying to do them more often, but they are time consuming. Despite the tendency to assume the entire Regency era was white, there was actually quite a bit of color in fabrics. Turkey red fabrics were especially popular.
I usually don’t go for Rose Ballgowns but I liked the grace of this costume and I really liked the sleeves. I didn’t mimic the plate exactly and I sort of invented the front of the dress since I only saw the back of the dress. I included gloves, which were needed since the sleeves of this era were so short, shoes to match and a wig styled with roses. So, it’s pretty much a whole Flora outfit.
Really this outfit happened because I have wonderful friends. As I wrote before, I have supportive friends who seem to be fairly relaxed when I say things like “Yeah, I’m thinking about buying Instyle so I have some paper doll fodder.” And they nod as though this is a normal thing to say while standing in a drug store at 10 pm on a light night chips run. In fact, sometimes they go through it with me telling me what I should draw though usually their picks are more hilarious than practical.
(I don’t really fancy the idea of drawing nine million sequins. Sorry guys.)
But when one of them told me this was the dress I should draw of a set of dresses I was looking at, I decided to go for it. It was the right period and fun, if a little fancier then what I usually draw
So, we’re a little late today and I am sorry about that, but as I’ve said a few times around here. School comes first. Flora’s costumes are often challenging, because I like to have lots of reference images before I try to draw anything. I’m always looking for more information on the right era of costumes for the paper doll.
The ballgown on the left is based on a plate from 1812. It is one of the costumes I have wanted to draw for a long time, but it was a challenge for me. I love the yellow trim. Her promenade costume is based on a different plate from 1814. The popularity of the ruffs around the necks of costumes in this era are very interesting. I don’t know if I like the look, but I feel like I have to include them as a matter of keeping things accurate.
Usually, I try to save my notes as to where I get my fashion plates that evolve into paper dolls, but I forgot this time, I’m afraid. The dress on the left is a promenade costume and the dress on the right is a day or walking dress. I am realizing I haven’t yet drawn gloves for Flora and I should. When short sleeves were standard, the need for gloves was pretty serious. England is not, after all, the warmest country.
So, I’ve got up a new poll, again, largely for my own amusement more then anything else. It’s a question I have always wondered about and now I get to know the answer.