Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Early Victorian Era Fashion Chit Chat - February 1839 The Ladies Pocket Magazine

Early Victorian Era Fashion Chit Chat - February 1839 The Ladies Pocket Magazine Remarks on the Prevailing Paris Fashions Vive la danse! Such is the exclamation of our youthful elegants and elegantes at present; it is, in truth, the season of fetes, and they never were more numerous and brilliant than they are at this moment; but before we enter the salls de bal, we have to perform our customary duty of taking a general view of the other departments of the toilette. We have little actual change to signalize in the form of hats and bonnets; the principal difference, in fact, that exists in the form is, that the first have the back of the crown encircled by the brim, which is, however, in that part exceedingly narrow, and the others are made with curtains. The brims of the majority are somewhat in the oval form, and decidedly closer than they were last season; the crowns are placed almost horizontally, which, we must observe, is by no means a generally becoming fashion. Black velvet continues to be the material most in favour for hats, particularly when trimmed with a single ostrich feather falling on the throat, and shaded to correspond with the colours of the ribbons employed. We must observe, however, that though shaded ribbons still retain their vogue, we see a good many hats trimmed with rich satin ribbons of one colour only, and a bouquet of feathers, that is, three short feathers to correspond. Blue and green of peculiarly rich full shades, are the hues in favour for that style of trimming. We may cite, among the most novel hats of the month, those of a new colour; it is between an azure blue and a French grey; both the edge of the brim and the back of the crown are trimmed with very broad antique black lace, a single ostrich feather panaches in different shades of blue, and ribbon to correspond; the latter, very sparingly employed, forms the trimming. Shot silks and satins are getting very fast out of favour, particularly in out-door costume. We see very few hats or bonnets composed of them, and scarcely any shawls; the most fashionable of the latter are now made of plain levantine, taffetas, or velvet, and trimmed with sable or ermine. Pou de soie robes, ornamented with fancy silk trimmings, appear to be in great favour in half dress: we have seen some that had the border trimmed in the apron style with guimpe of a new description, intermixed with silk acorns; the sleeves were ornamented to correspond, and the corsage, which was half high, was trimmed round the top with a lappel descending in a point in front, and bordered with guimpe. We may cite, among the most novel evening dresses, those of pou de soie, trimmed with three flounces, each flounce ornamented with a guirlande of lace. The sleeves and the corsage are decorated en suite. The tunic style is also a good deal adopted in evening dress, that is to say, robes are trimmed down the front or round the borders in the tunic form, either with lace or bouillons, or, in some instances, with embroidery. Generally speaking, corsages are very low, more so indeed than strict delicacy would warrant; this is sometimes remedied by a pelerine of antique point lace, but we regret to say, that this fashion, at once becoming and dressy, is not very generally adopted. Nothing can be lighter or more graceful than the present style of ball dress. Some of the most novel are of tulle over white satin; the robe has two skirts, the upper one is raised on each side by a bouillon, and displays the second skirt trimmed with a rich lace flounce surmounted by embroidered bouquets at the parts where the upper skirt is looped. The corsage, which is in crossed drapery, is trimmed with lace set on below the drapery in front, and descending on the breast in a point. Short hanging sleeves of moderate size, composed of two bouillons terminated by a fall of lace. Velvet flowers are also very much in vogue for ball dresses; sometimes a wreath encircles the border, but it generally serves as the heading to a flounce, for there are very few dresses made without flounces. The flounce is frequently raised on one side in the drapery style, and the ends are looped under a bouquet which terminates the wreath. Flowers are also frequently disposed en tunique, or en tablier; but in whatever way they may be employed, they always produce an elegant and tasteful effect. Coiffures offer nothing novel; those for ball dress are always encheveux. Fashionable colours are the same as last month.

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