French Morning Dress, March 1803

Journal de Dames et de Modes, March 26, 1803.

“Turban de Crepe. Boucles d’Oreilles à anse de Panier. Robe du Matin.”

This is a lovely example of a morning dress from the early period. Though French, it includes many of the elements of an English indoor morning dress: loose-fitting for comfort, room in the shoulders and sleeves to allow for ease of movement, white muslin, lots of lace and ribbons. An English lady would have worn a white cap instead of a turban of bright red crepe, but this lady is French, after all.

Note the train. It strange to imagine an at-home dress would need a train, but in the early years of the century, dresses of all kinds included trains.

The dress appears to fasten up the front with tied ribbons. The bodice does not seem to be open in the front, so it may be a separate piece. The long hem is flounced with a simple deep ruffle of a spotted fabric, perhaps spotted muslin. The collar and cuffs are formed of a simple small ruffle.

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