Fashions of London and Paris, August 1800.
I love this print for two reasons: it includes a gorgeous riding habit, and I love riding habits, and the other two dresses were designed by the fabulous Madame Lanchester.
This little magazine included 6 to 8 fashion prints monthly, “faithfully drawn from the real life in the most fashionable circles.” Relatively inexpensive at 1 shilling 6 pence per issue, its prints were never as finely engraved and colored as those from the more expensive magazines. I have never been able to find information regarding the circulation numbers for Fashions of London and Paris, but even if it was only a thousand copies, imagine hand-coloring 6000 – 8000 prints each month!
The print is described in the magazine as follows:
“”Fig. 1: Round hat of green and white chip. Wreath of red roses. White veil. Round dress of white muslin. Scarf of green muslin; one end thrown carelessly over the right shoulder, the other over the left arm.
“Fig 2: Habit of bottle green or dark brown, buttoned loose over the bosom, with a white waistcoat edged with pink or other color. Round beaver hat and feather.
(For this Fashionable Habit we are indebted to Mr. Showbridge of Old Bond Street.)
“Fig. 3: Dress of white muslin; the body made to button in front, with the collar to button occasionally. Full and long sleeves, made of alternate stripes of lace and muslin, and confined with bands of muslin. Hat of white chip and yellow crape, ornamented with flowers.
(For the elegant dresses, Fig. 1 and 3, we are indebted to the politeness of Mrs. Lanchester of Sackville Street.)”
This magazine is the only one I have found that refers to the famous modiste as Mrs. Lanchester. I have always assumed Madame Lanchester was a fashionable affectation. Perhaps she had yet to become so highly elevated in the world of London fashion, and was still a plain Mrs. She had a cameo appearance in my book Once a Gentleman. You can read more about her on the Behind the Scenes page for that book.