While the 18th Century might be my favourite period in history, it does have a plucky young rival strutting about in crimson heels.
Ah, the 17th Century, had we but world enough and time …
As a recent discussion on Isis’ Wardrobe’s Blog points out, it is a sorely neglected age, probably for various reasons (do go and read the post – yummy 17th C gowns and interesting comments on why this era seems so out of favour), but everyone’s favourite Duchess of the Americas has made a very good point indeed – why not create the interest and whip up our own blog buzz for us Early Modern Millies and Baroque belles?
So these are a few of my favourite (17th Century) things:
Masks as everyday wear, as blogged far more eloquently and informatively than I could manage by everyone’s favourite Nerdy History Girls. This is one of my favourite mask images, in fact.
Angelique, the indomitable heroine of over a dozen novels and wearer of some of the most glamourous 17th century gowns ever written.
Pretty damask patterns (need I say more?).
Stand and deliver! Everyone’s favourite outlaws have strong associations with the era: highwaymen and pirates! The word highwayman comes into use in the first quarter of the century and the golden age of piracy began in the 1650s. Yarrr!
Literary loveliness – To His Coy Mistress is one of my favourite poems of all times; Moll Flanders, the queen of thieves; and the emergence of some distinguished female writers, such as Lady Mary Wroth and Aphra Behn, one of the first English women to earn her way by her pen.
Musketeers! Nuff said.
Bucket-top boots – iconic and versatile, wear them high or folded down.
Poofy sleeves and bare shoulders – a prize-winning combo:
Big, swishy-skirted justaucorps – oh yes! Perfect for the swaggering gent about town!
I could probably go on longer, but I fear I have rambled on too long. Now, I throw the ball into your court, dear reader – whatever should I do with this fabric?
I want to make something 17th century with it, but now I have it (and it is so lovely), I’m at a bit of a loss, which isn’t helped by the fact that I’ve found it quite difficult to get hold of resources from this century, nevermind patterns. I’m hoping that with your help, I can focus my search and get some fresh inspiration.