Evening Dress, June 1818

Ackermann’s Repository of Arts, June 1818.

“Evening Dress.”

There is so much going on at the bottom of the dress that one hardly notices how tiny the bodice is. And yet, a great deal of space is devoted to the description of this bodice. Perhaps that is to help a woman with a more normal sized bust to imagine how it might look on her. (The bust line in most British prints is often  impossibly high and tiny.)

As mentioned in other prints of this late period, evening hats are now more common. In the General Observations on Fashion and Dress in this issue we find the following statement: “In full dress, toques, turbans, caps, and small hats are all considered fashionable; even the most youthful belle covers at least partially her beautiful tresses with one or other of them.”

The print is described in the magazine as follows:

“A white net gown over a pale blush-coloured slip; the body is made tight to the shape, and cut very low all round the bust, which is delicately shaded by an under front of white lace. The bust of the dress is tastefully ornamented by rich white silk trimming; a band of the same round the waist, with white silk tassels tied in front, gives an elegant finish to the body of the dress. The skirt is trimmed with draperies of net interspersed with bunches of roses; these draperies are placed high, and the skirt is finished round the bottom by a narrow trimming, of a novel description, composed of satin and a rich flounce of blond lace. Short full sleeve. Head-dress a toque composed of richly embroidered gauze, ornamented with an elegant plume of white feathers, which are placed so as to fall over on the right side. Pearl necklace and ear-rings. White kid gloves, and white satin shoes.

“We are indebted to the invention and taste of Miss Macdonald of 50, South Molton-street, for both our dresses this month.”

Related Regency World Articles: