Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Wheels in Motion- the 1820's

I'll be honest, this week I completely expected to write a blog post that ridiculed the 1820's for their puffy sleeves and silly amounts of accessories. Boy, was I wrong. While it's true that I still prefer the naturalistic simplicity of 1790-1810, I've really come to appreciate the grandeur and opulence of 1820's fashion.

And I've also discovered that the 1830's are WAY more ridiculous than the 1820's. Just you wait 'till next week.

A breathtaking gown from the beginning of the decade. Check out the empire waist, trims, and sleeves.
At the beginning of the decade, the empire waist was still popular.  During the first half of the decade, there were slight changes, but nothing too drastic until about 1825, when natural waistlines came into fashion.

Another early decade ballgown. The waistline is a little lower than usual, but not quite at the natural waist.
By the end of the decade, long, large sleeves were the norm for daywear, skirts were fuller, and waists were lower. Necklines on daywear shot up. Mustard yellow was a popular color, and bolder prints came into fashion, as shown below.



One thing I'm noticing as I leaf through fashion plates of the 1820's is that trims seem to be subduing ever so slightly. Maybe it's just me, but it looks like the trims are going back to the same color as the main garment, and are disappearing from some garments altogether, instead of being on EVERYTHING as in the later half of the 1810's. By the 1830's and 1840's, they'll disappear completely.

Hairstyles also saw a change near the middle of the decade. I mentioned in last week's post that a new trend in hair was curls worn near the temples to frame the face. As the decade wore on, these curls became more and more voluminous, and something that I can only describe as "tall hair loopies" (hey there, Avatar fans) were worn on the back of the head.

The two images in the middle are good examples of early and mid-late decade styles, respectively.
An early-mid decade hairstyle. Note the tiny hair loops in the back. On the clothing front, check out the mustard yellow, embroidered trim, and patterned shawl.
A closer look at bigger curls on either side of the head.
Next week, everything gets just a little more ridiculous. Hairstyles, hair accessories, hats, and sleeves will only get wackier as we venture into the 1830's and I start to reference "Wives and Daughters." 


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