French Walking Dress, June 1798

Journal des Dames et des Modes, Paris, June 13, 1798.

“Chapeau plissé et lassé. Médaillon en Ecusson. Garniture de Robe en Comète.”

This print is from the first year of publication of this magazine, and still carries the Revolutionary Calendar date of An 6 (Year 6: mid-September 1797 through mid-September 1798). According to the tiny print at the bottom, it was drawn at the Jardin d’Idalie, a French pleasure garden.

The yellow bonnet is quite elaborate, with several giant bows. The pleating is reminiscent of the collapsible calash worn a few decades earlier to accommodate the giant hairdos.  She holds up a red medallion with some kind of insignia on it, on a long gold chain.

The white dress has a demi-train, the waist is gathered full in the back, and the sleeves are short and tight. According to the text below the print, the yellow ribbon trimming has something to do with comets. A French astronomer had discovered a new comet in 1798, so perhaps this somehow inspired the trimming.

The  pink gloves, below elbow-length, and the bright red slippers are a nice French touch.

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