Court Dress, August 1820

La Belle Assemblée, August 1820.

“Court Dress of Lady Worsley Holmes, worn at the first Drawing Room of George IV.”

George IV became king in January 1820 upon the death of his father George III. His coronation was not until July 1821. But apparently his first birthday Drawing Room was held in June 1820.

This magazine was published in July, but as always, the fashion prints are dated for the next month, in this case August. So, although the print is dated August, the dress would have been worn in June.

This dress, worn at that first Drawing Room, shows the new style of court dress. Finally, hoops were no longer required. White plumes, trains, and lappets were still required, but the court ladies must have been thrilled to wear more stylish gowns at court, without the odd silhouette of high waistlines with hoop skirts that had been required during the 60 years of the previous reign.

The extravagant width of the old hoop skirts now seems to have transferred to the head. So many plumes!

The print is described in the magazine as follows:

“A beautiful drawing was taken of this superb and elegant dress last month, but our Engraver disappointed us of then offering it to the public; in addition to a faithful representation of it in our Print of Fashion, the following description is offered to our fair readers. It consists of a rich white satin slip, with a fancy petticoat over it, embroidered in pearls, wheat-ears, blue chenille rosettes, and wreaths of the same. The petticoat finished at the border with a rouleau of blue gros-de-Naples, wreathed over with pearls. A robe train of blue gros-de-Naples lined throughout with white satin, trimmed all round with a rich French blond, and rouleau of gros-de-Naples, entwined with pearls, to correspond with the border of the petticoat. The body of blue gros-de-Naples, tastefully ornamented with pearls and French blond. Headdress is a magnificent plume of ostrich feathers, bandeau of diamonds, and blond court lappets.”

Related Regency World Articles: