Tuesday, 4 October 2011

A Regency Lady's Style


Well, after my first live book launch and reading of Dangerous Deceit last night, where I tried to dress in something resembling Regency evening fashion, I thought I'd better mention the real fashion style here! You can read about the launch on my reading and writing blog.


Anyone who has watched a Jane Austen drama or film will know that ladies wore empire line dresses in the Regency period of 1811 to 1820, both for day and evening. Evening dresses were caught under the low-cut bust line, then flowed in a straight column to the floor. Sleeves were often short and puffed slightly, and ladies wore long gloves. Hair adornments varied from ribbons and pearls to turbans with feathers. 


Accessories normally included a light shawl, a fan and a reticule, while parasols were used during the day. During this period, ladies often dispensed with any kind of corset, preferring to wear a camisole to protect the light material from perspiration and to avoid the dress being too transparent, unless that was the naughty aim! The idea was to emulate the flowing classical lines of ancient Greek and Roman times.

It was such an elegant age that next time, I decide to dress up, I think I'll need to hire or make a more authentic costume!

Romy

4 comments:

Carolb said...

It was a very elegant fashion, and I'm sure much more comfortable without the corset.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Thanks for visiting, Carol - wish we had such elegant fashion these days!

Bill Kirton said...

I must pick your brain some time about the fashion in 1840. I've found illustrations and descriptions but you so clearly know what you're talking about that you could help me to avoid the faux pas that men tend to make when it comes to clothing.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

Hi Bill - not so sure I know what I'm talking about in all periods! But I do have some idea of the 1840s and some excellent research books. Leave it with me and I'll refresh my memory.