Evening Full Dress, April 1809

La Belle Assemblée, April 1809.

“Evening Full Dress in March 1809”

I find this image interesting as it is bit dowdier than usual for an evening full dress. Rather than a young fashionable woman out for a fabulous evening, she looks to me more like a chaperone or matron who sits near the fire to stay warm (hence the fire screen beside her).

She wears a parure (ie a matching set) of  gold and emerald jewelry. Note that she wears bracelets and armlets, both of which were almost always worn in pairs. The earrings are very modern-looking hoops.

The print is described in the magazine as follows:

“A round robe of green velvet, with antique bodice, and stomacher of blended gold and velvet. Short full sleeve, ornamented à-la-Spanish, to correspond. A plain gold lace placed round the bottom just above the hem, and also round the waist. A shade of Paris net across the back, edged with gold, and fastened on the shoulders with a gold or emerald brooch. A deep antique lace laid flat round the bosom and back, with a drawn tucker above. Hair confined in a gold caul [ie a kind of snood] behind and in full curls in front, with Cleopatra diadem of emeralds and gold. Earrings, necklace, bracelets, and armlets to correspond. Shoes, amber or white satin. Fan of carved ivory. An occasional scarf, or shawl, of cream-coloured or white French silk, with gold or coloured embroidered body.”

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