Women’s Fashions 1800s

French Masquerade Ball Costumes in the 1700 and 1800s

There are many descriptions of what people wore in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in France. Some of these descriptions were printed in books about acceptable masquerade ball costumes that could be worn to dances and parties. Descriptions also sometimes included actual fashions worn by peasants, gentlemen, ladies, merveilleuses, incroyables, and nobility. Here are some…

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Victorian French Lingerie

The concept that lingerie and undergarments were visually appealing, did not become a thought until the late nineteenth century during the Victorian Era, and, at that time, some of the best lingerie that could be purchased came from France. In fact, it was common for nineteenth century English and American visitors to travel to France…

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Animal Fads and Fashions in the 18th and 19th Century

It seems as if animals have always had some effect on fashion. Beavers were all the rage in the 17th century to the point they became decimated in Europe and paved the way for North America to become the premier supplier of beaver pelts. But it was not just beavers that consumers wanted. Other animals…

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Images of Bourbon Restoration Fashions 1814-1819

The Bourbon Restoration began after the fall of Napoleon, and, at the time, as “the white flag floated from the dome of the Tuileries … there was a passion for white gowns.” These white gowns were generally trimmed at the bottom with flowers and worn to both private and official balls. In addition, there was…

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Victorian Fad of False or Artificial Calves

Victorians embraced many unusual fads. For instance, besides adopting the famous stooping fashion of the Grecian Bend, some Victorian women adopted Alexandra of Denmark’s limp and were even willing to wear mismatched shoes to achieve it. Men likewise adopted a strange fashion. It was an S-shaped posture known as the Roman Fall. But there was…

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Hairstyles of 1870

According to Peterson’s Magazine, hairstyles of 1870 were “not [any] less high upon the summit of the head than they were [the previous] … year; quite the contrary, only the chignon has disappeared.” Although the hairstyles might have been the same size in height, the back of 1870 hairdos were flatter and consisted of curls,…

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Hairstyles with Bonnets in 1864

During the 1860s, Henri de Bysterveld, a French hairdresser and editor of the Gazette of Hair, published several books and elevated hairdressing to an art form. His hairstyles relied on Greek, Roman, and Louis XIII to Louis XVI times for inspiration. Bysterveld often used ornamentation, such as feathers, flowers, or jewels, and it was claimed…

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French Fall Fashions 1867

French fall fashions for 1867 continued much in the same vein as earlier 1867 fashions. Creatively trimmed skirts ranged in length from the ankle to the floor, and paletots remained another popular part of a fashionable woman’s toilet. Colors for fall varied, although they were somewhat darker in color than the summer fashions. Fabrics for…

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French Summer Fashion 1867

French summer fashion for 1867 continued to have skirts with trains and to range in  length from the ankle to the floor. Paletots and peplums, a short overskirt, were popular, as were white, blue, and pale colored toilets made from silk, muslin, and poplin. Flowery embroidery was also popular for the summer, and bonnets and…

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