, October 1810.
“Morning Dress on a Visit”
Morning dresses fall into two main types: indoor and outdoor dresses. Indoor morning dresses would have been quite casual, worn at home, sometimes for receiving visitors, but mostly for just hanging out alone or with the family. Outdoor morning dresses were for walking, shopping, and also for visiting. This dress (“Morning Dress on a Visit”) would likely have been worn with a bonnet over the lace cap, and, if the weather was cool, some type of outer garment, both of which would have been removed for the visit.
The tall pot on the table would have been used for coffee or chocolate, not tea. Coffee and chocolate pots looked similar, except that the chocolate pot had a hinged lid. We can’t tell from the print if the pot lid is hinged. But the adjacent sugar bowl and tongs, without a creamer, might suggest chocolate, as it was a very bitter drink, and as it was made with milk, there would be no need for a cream pitcher.
The print is described in the magazine as follows:
“DEJEUNE, OR MORNING VISITING DRESS. A tunick of sky blue silk, made up to the throat, with collar, and buttoned down the front with small blue silk buttons; over which is worn a loose short dress of plain, checked, or striped India Muslin, with long sleeves, and each side of the front of the dress trimmed with a quilling of lace, and tied down with bows of white satin ribband, flounced round the bottom with a deep French lace, confined round the arms with blue Persian. Sash of the same, tied in front. A white lace hood, lined with blue, and double quilling of French net in the front. Pale buff kid slippers.”