Gala Evening Dress, July 1812

Gala Evening Dress July 1812La Belle Assemblée, July 1812.

“Evening Dress”

This must have been a Very Important Dress, as it is fairly dripping in sapphires and pearls. The description suggests it is an Opera or Gala Dress.  This jeweled ensemble is certainly not the usual half dress would would wear the the opera, but perhaps there was some sort of gala performance that was a much more formal occasion.

The print is described in the magazine as follows:

“OPERA, OR GALA DRESS. A robe of Imperial blue sarasnet, shot with white, with a demi train, ornamented with fine French lace down each side in front and round the bottom; the trimming surmounted by a white satin ribband; the robe left open a small space down the front, and fastened with clasps of sapphire and pearl over a white satin slip petticoat; short fancy sleeve to correspond with the ornaments of the robe. Parisian cap made open, formed of rows of fine lace and strings of pearl, the hair dressed à-la-Henriette of France, appearing between, and much separated on the forehead. Pearl necklace, and hoop earrings of the same. Scarf shawl in twisted drapery of find white lace. White kid gloves and fan of ivory, ornamented with gold. Slippers the same color as the robe, with white rosettes.–This beautiful dress is the invention of Miss Walters, Wigmore-street, Cavendish Square.”

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