Full Dress, July 1813

Ackermann’s Repository of Arts, July 1813.

“Full Dress”

Whoever was in charge of the fashion pages in this magazine at this time seemed to think this dress showed a bit too much skin (see the description below), and probably positioned the model for the print in such as way as to cover up as much as possible. The model, or perhaps the artist, gave her a somewhat coy expression, as if to say, “You may not be able to see how revealing my dress is, but come a bit closer and I’ll show you.”

And just to add emphasis to her come-hither expression, by resting the fan against her right check she is sending a well-known signal meaning Yes in the language of the fan.

The type of fan shown in the print and described as “carved ivory” was very popular during the Regency and is discussed in detail here.

The print is described in the magazine as follows:

“EVENING OR FULL DRESS COSTUME. A round robe of pale jonquil or canary-coloured crape, worn over a white satin slip; short sleeves composed of the shell-scallopped lace and satin, decorated with bows on the shoulders, and formed as to display perhaps rather too much of the bosom, back, and shoulders; a broad scallopped lace finishes the robe at the feet, above which is placed a double row of plaited ribband, and a diamond clasp confines the waist in front. A Prussien helmet cap of canary-coloured sarsnet, frosted with silver, diadem and tassels to correspond; a full plume of curled ostrich feathers, inclining toward one side of the helmet; the hair divided in front of the forehead, and in loose curls on each side, with a single stray ringlet falling on the left shoulder. A cross of diamonds, suspended from a gold chain, ornaments the throat and bosom–ear-rings and bracelets to suit. Slippers of canary-coloured satin, trimmed with silver. Glove of French kid; fan of carved ivory. An occasional scarf or shawl of white lace.”





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