Walking Dresses, June 1808

La Belle Assemblée, June 1808.

“Fashionable Spring Walking Dresses”

This publication was just over 2 years old and still offering prints showing 2 or 3 figures in either colored or black-and-white versions, depending on how much you paid for the magazine. By 1809, the single figure print became the norm. Note that the parasols are held by the top point and not the handle. A majority of my prints show parasols held in this manner, with a loop or ribbon tie attached to the point.

The print is described in the magazine as follows:

“No. 1 [left]: A plain cambric, or jaconet muslin dress, made a walking length; scalloped at the feet and wrist, with high gored bosom, and long sleeves of net. A spencer of silver lilac sarsnet, with bosom and cuffs ornamented à-la-Militaire. Simple turban bonnet, composed of the same material as the spencer. The hair in alternate bands and ringlets. Gloves and shoes of lemon-coloured kid; and parasol of shaded green sarsnet. It is well to observe that with this kind of bonnet is usually worn a short veil of white lace, suspended from the edge next the hair.

“No. 2 [center]: A light dress of blossom-coloured muslin over white cambric, with waistcoat bosom, and deep scalloped collar and cuffs. A large gipsy hat of straw, or imperial chip, tied across the crown with a silk handkerchief, of the same shade, or one of white brocade sarsnet. A veil of Mecklin lace, thrown negligently over the front of the hat, so as agreeably to shade the countenance. Small French watch, worn on the outside. Shoes of purple kid, or olive jean. Gloves of York tan. Brown, green, or purple parasol, with a deep fringed awning.

“No. 3 [right]: A simple frock of French cambric, buttons up the back, with round bosom and plain sleeve with frock cuff. A Spanish vest of pale blue, or French grey sarsnet, with short French sleeve, lapelled bosom, and pointed skirt, finished with correspondent tassels. A pale amber or lemon-coloured scarf of Chinese silk, twisted negligently round the throat, the end flowing in varied drapery, or restrained by the graceful disposition of the head. A cottage poke bonnet of fine straw, simply ornamented with a bow of white ribband on the right side. Gold filigree earrings of the hoop form. Hair in irregular curls, partially confined with a band. Gloves of Limerick, and shoes of grey kid.”



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