Dinner Dress, August 1817

The British Lady’s Magazine, August 1817.

“Dinner Dress.”

This is another example of a sweet, almost youthful-looking dress worn with a matronly cap.  (Here’s another one, also from 1817.) Such caps were only worn by married ladies, but why they would want to look so matronly is a mystery. The dictates of Fashion, one assumes.

She carries a pamphlet titled “New Improved Series. MacKay’s.”  This magazine was published by D. MacKay, and this issue is from a “New Series.” One wonders why she would need this at a dinner party, except perhaps to provide a bit a free publicity for this magazine.

The print is described in the magazine as follows:

“BRITISH LADY’S DINNER DRESS is of pale yellow satin, the body and sleeves of satin striped gauze, with two rows of blond, or lace round the bosom and sleeves, the waist very short; the lower part of the dress is made of the same materials as the body and sleeves, with a very deep border elegantly ornamented. We beg leave to refer to readers to our print for its form, novelty, and elegance. Mob cap of lace and white satin, surmounted with a large bunch of coloured ribbands, with a small group of variegated flowers, worn rather on one side. The hair is in dishevelled curls, divided in front of the fore-head. Necklace and earrings of white cornelian. White kid slippers and gloves.”

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